I think I've discovered how to make the fluffiest, softest, most melt-in-your-mouth, most delicious bread. Ever. This big loaf has swirls (green, healthy matcha swirls, to be exact), and a big AF bolo crust topping laying right on top of it.
I really don't know where I thought of that idea. Maybe making too many bolo breads in the past? Anyways, I now am a totally firm believer that the crispy cookie crust, on top of anything, tastes amazing. Like ice cream, a bolo crusted custard pie?!?!?! You name it and you'll know...
This bread incorporates the infamous "tangzhong" method. It's a flour roux mixture that is cooked over medium heat and used as a natural softening agent for the bread. I found out about this method a couple of years ago, reading Christine's blog, and noticed as the years have gone by, that this method has become popular in Western recipes for milk bread as well. When I make any bread nowadays, milk bread or not, I never use recipes, just intuition and feel. After enough times you know the amount of each ingredient, whether that be butter, sugar, liquid, or flour, that goes into making the dough a certain texture. Without further ado, let's get baking!!
For the Tangzhong:
- 93g water
- 30g AP flour
For the Bread (Plain & Matcha) Dough:
- 320g bread flour, more if needed
- 7g (1 packet) Instant Yeast
- 55g white granulated sugar
- 5g salt
- All the tangzhong
- 125g milk, more if needed
- 1 egg
- 32g butter, softened
- 2 tb matcha powder
- 2.5 tb water
For the Cookie Bolo Crust Topping:
- 60g butter, softened
- 50g icing sugar
- 40g egg (about 1/2 egg)
- 104g AP flour
- Soak raisins in water until covered. (Optional)
- For the tangzhong, mix the water and AP flour together. Cook on medium low heat until roux becomes thick and can coat the back of a spoon very well. Cool the pan quickly by running the BOTTOM of the pan in cold water. Place the tangzhong in the fridge for 5 minutes if necessary. We don't want its heat to kill the yeast.
- Measure out the dry ingredients (minus the salt) and whisk them all together. After this mixture is well combined, add the salt. Mix well.
- Whisk the milk and egg together. Add to the dry ingredients mixture. Add softened butter.
- Knead for a bit until well combined (5 minutes vigorous kneading). Split 2/5 of the dough apart. In another bowl, add matcha powder and water together until a smooth paste forms. Place the paste into the (2/5) smaller section.
- Knead both doughs until the window pane test for bread succeeds. In other words, if you can take a small piece of both bread doughs and stretch out, and this does not break easily, the dough is good to go.
- Quick-proof your two dough in the oven with the lights on and a cup of warm water. Let the dough rise for 1-1.5 hour or until doubled in size.
- Make my cookie crust using these methods and chill in the fridge after!
- Knock both doughs down, and roll both into 3 or 4 separate, but equally weighed pieces. I used a scale for measuring out 6 separate doughs.
- Take out the matcha cookie bolo crust and split into 3 or 4 equal pieces by weight. Place them back in the fridge for now.
- Roll out one plain and one matcha dough until same length, with the width of the matcha dough a bit smaller than that of the plain. Put the matcha dough on top of the plain dough and sprinkle some raisins on top, being careful not to over fill the sides.
- Roll the two sides (lengthwise) of the combined dough and the roll upwards (bottom up). No raisins should fall outside.
- Roll out cookie bolo crust topping from the fridge and place it on the already-swirled dough. Place in container. Make markings as desired.
- Repeat steps 10-12 for the other 2 (or 3) sets of matcha/plain doughs.
- Preheat your oven to 350F. Bake for 40-45 minutes until the top is golden brown and the bread is cooked fully in its interior.
Please, please eat this softest bwed!