When I was little I used to love having cocoa with brioche for breakfast. We’d have the cocoa in a bowl and throw chunks of the brioche (or even stale bread!) in, let it soak and spoon it out. Poor man’s cereal! No need to buy cornflakes and such ;) Obviously it’s delicious with butter and jam and if you decide to make a loaf, it’s well worth toasting it.
My mom used to buy brioche at the store, so this is a recipe that I put together after reading and experimenting with various recipes. I spiced it up a bit with my dad’s homemade apricot pálinka. It gives it a really nice aroma. But you can also use rum. Sprinkling with a nut and sugar mixture or adding dried fruit could also give it a bit of a kick.
8g dried yeast
6g vanilla sugar
zest of one lemon
2tbsp pálinka or rum (optional)
1 egg for brushing
Mix all the ingredients together until well combined. If your dough “rips” add a bit more milk. Cover the bowl with a hand towel and let it rest for 30 minutes. (If you have a bread machine, you know what to do.)
Knead the dough on your work surface a little then shape into a round loaf or put into a rectangular loaf tin. Cover with a hand towel and let it rest for 30 minutes.
Braids and snails:
There’s no way I’d be able to explain this in words, but hopefully the pictures will help you make these neat little buns. Make sure you divide the dough into equal pieces. I won’t give you a number as it depends on what size buns you want to end up with. You can even divide it into two and make a big bun that you can then slice like bread.
Once shaped, cover with a hand towel and let it rest for 30 minutes.
The classic shape – Brioche à tête:
This dough recipe should be enough for eight ramekins/brioche tins. You can also use a muffin/cupcake tin. Grease the ramekins or whatever you’re using. Divide the dough into 10 equal pieces and roll them into balls. Place eight of these balls into the ramekins. Cover with a hand towel and let rest for 30 minutes. Meanwhile take the other two balls, and divide each of them into four equal pieces. So now you have eight little balls. Once the 30 minutes are up, take the little balls and shape them into teardrops. Make holes with your thumb in the dough in the ramekins and place a teardrop in each with their “head” on top. Let them rest for another 20 minutes or so.
Once the shaping and resting’s done, brush the top of the loaf/braids/têtes with an egg and bake in a preheated 180°C oven for 25 minutes or until golden brown.