Brioche is a typical french kind of loaf that is eaten for breakfast. It can also be found in small, individual versions which would have a ball-shaped top.(image found here)
This is the recipe of the brioche my grandfather used to bake when I was a little girl. My favourite brioche is not sweet and I can only complain that nowadays most shops will only bake brioche with lots of sugar in them!
A little warning, though, brioches are made with loads of butter, so I strongly advise (self-advice…) not to eat them every day…
The recipe in itself is easy, but the whole procedure is time consuming! Count about a day before the actual day of serving.
ingredients for one loaf:
7.5 g. fresh yeast, diluted in 1 tablespoon of lukewarm water
7.5g salt, mixed with 15g sugar and diluted in 1 tablespoon of milk
180g soft butter (that is to say at room temperature, NOT melted)
1 egg yolk + 1 teaspoon of water +1 pinch of salt for glazing
Mix the salt-sugar-milk mixture with the flour.
Add the yeast mixture.
Combine until it starts forming a dough (a few minutes).
Add the butter. Knead the dough for 2 minutes.
The dough should be sticky and not very firm. Do not add extra flour.
Cover it with a cloth and leave it in a warm place, without draft for 1h30.
After that, just pinch the dough once in the middle and turn it over. I do not know the culinary word in English. Basically, as the dough will have risen about double its size, you will need to put your hands in the middle and turn it over and that is enough.
Then, cover it with a cloth and put in the fridge overnight or for about 8 hours.
After that time, take it out of the fridge. Cut the dough in 4 balls, knead them a little and place them in a cake mould.
Cover the mould with a cloth and keep in a warm place for the dough to rise one more time.
It will take about 2 to 3 hours to do so.
Once the balls have risen, glaze them with a mixture of egg yolk, mixed with a teaspoon of water and a pinch of salt.
Place the mould in a pre-heated oven (180°C) and bake for 30 minutes…
Enjoy with a cup of hot chocolate, some chocolate spread or with some smoked salmon or foie gras if you’re not vegetarian!