Tuesday, September 28, 2010
There are many recipes and methods of making bread. Ever since I discovered how amazing this TangZhong Method (湯種法) is, I never switched back to the old recipes. TangZhong method was originated from Japan, to make soft and fluffy bread. The most amazing part is, the bread made with this method stays soft and fluffy even after a few days. Simply reheat the slice of bread/bun in the microwave for 10 to 15 seconds, you’ll have a warm, soft and fluffy bun on hand, just like it’s fresh out of the oven.
Basically, the TangZhong method is to mix 1 part of bread flour with 5 parts of water (by weight) at 65°C (149 °F) to form a paste/wet dough. At 65°C, the gluten in the bread flour and water mixture would absorb the moisture and become leavened. Thus, when the TangZhong is added into other ingredients of a bread dough, it will be heightened and produce fluffier bread.
With the basic TangZhong bread recipe, you can wrap the dough with any ingredients you preferred, the sky is the limit. Whether sweet or savory, or simply just white toast, they’ll all be wonderful. With the TangZhong bread recipe, I’ve made Hong Kong Bakery style hot dog buns, ham and cheese rolls, crab and sweet corn buns, coconut custards loaf, sesame paste buns, BBQ Pork Buns, etc. The simple white loaf is the one I always go back to make more.
It’s soft and fluffy, melt in your mouth goodness. It has a hint of sweetness and buttery flavor. Look at the air bubbles in between the bread, it’s lovely. You can slather it with butter, your favorite preserves, wrap your kind of meat or veggies in between 2 slices….or just like me, eat it plain! :) Yes, you really don’t need anything with this bread, it’s that good! Go give it a try and you’ll fall in love with this recipe, just like I did.
White Bread (Loaf) with TangZhong Method (白方包--湯種法):
Makes a 9x5-inch Loaf
TangZhong 湯種 Ingredients:
1/2 Cup Boiling Water
1/4 Cup Bread Flour
Bread Dough Ingredients:
1/2 Cup Warm Milk
1/2 Teaspoon Salt
3 Tablespoon Sugar
3 Tablespoon Melted Butter
1 1/2 Cup Bread Flour*
1 1/3 Teaspoon Active Dry Yeast
Egg Wash Ingredients (optional):
1 Beaten Egg
1 Teaspoon water
To Make The TangZhong 湯種:
Place bread flour in a small bowl, pour boiling water over the bread flour and stir quickly with a fork to combine until no lumps.
Wrap mixture (it'll be a very wet dough) with plastic wrap, form dough in ball/round shape and leave in refrigerator overnight.
To Make The Bread:
1. Take out the TangZhong 湯種 from the fridge at least an hour before use (I usually leave it on countertop until it's room temperature).
2. In a bread machine, pour in ingredient in this order, warm milk, TangZhong 湯種, salt, sugar, butter, bread flour and yeast. Set bread machine to dough setting according to its user menu.
3. When dough is ready, take it out from bread machine and punch it a few times to deflate it. Divide dough into 4 equal portions and shape them into balls. Leave them in a warm place to rest 15-20 mins.
4. Knead each dough ball a few times and shape each into an oval shape. Place them diagonally into a 9x5-inch loaf pan. Let dough proof the 2nd round for 45 mins in a warm and moist place.
5. Preheat oven 355°F. Brush egg wash on top (optional) and bake for 23-25 mins
Tips: When proofing the dough, make sure it's in a warm place and covered with wet towel or plastic wrap so it won't dry out. I usually place it in the oven with a bowl of hot water.
Note: The dough setting on my bread machine kneads the dough for 27 minutes and keeps the dough warm to proof for 1 hour. If you don’t have a bread machine and knead your dough by hand, make sure you knead the dough for 15 to 20 minutes (depends on your strength and speed) and proof it for a hour until the dough double in size before you move on to step 3 from above.)
*If the weather in your area is rather humid, fell free to add up to 1/4 cup of bread flour so the dough, it will be easier to handle. I usually look at the dough in the bread machine to determine if additional flour is needed.