Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Bacon and Cheese Bread Using Tangzhong Method

I must admit that I'm really not a big fan of bread making. Aside from the banana bread which I frequently make for the hubs and the girls, I very seldom make other types of bread. Though bread may be cheaper homemade, the time and hassle involved make store-bought ones more preferable for me. But everytime I make bread at home, the excitement I see on my daughters' faces as they wait for the bread to come out of the oven always makes me realize that homemade bread is still the best! In terms of flavor, freshness, and all-around quality, nothing beats homemade bread!

Just like for example, this Bacon and Cheese Bread which I made for this month's Baking Partners' Challenge...
It's so soft and truly so delicious! Though it took me several hours to make it, this bread is  definitely worth the “homemade” effort! The best thing about it is being able to add the ingredients that we all like --- bacon and cheese! The whole family loved it and everyone requested that I make it again! It's priceless to see the big smiles this bread brought on the faces of my husband and daughters! 

This month's Baking Partners' Challenge involves making bread using either the Asian method Tangzhong or the Scandinavian method of scalded flour. I opted to try the Tangzhong method and adapted a Japanese Style Bacon and Cheese Bread recipe from Christine's Recipes. The Tangzhong Method of making bread which was introduced by Yvonne Chen, author of the book "The 65ยบ C Bread Doctor", is what's called the “secret ingredient” to make soft and bouncy bread. Tangzhong is a kind of “flour paste” that's very natural and handy to make. When tangzhong is added into other ingredients of the bread, the bread dough will be heightened and produces softer bread. I can attest to how soft it made my Bacon and Cheese Bread!  I actually made another loaf of bread using tangzhong, and it also came out really soft in the inside. Don't worry, I'll be sharing it with you on my next post. :)

I would like to thank Swathi of Zesty South Indian Kitchen for another wonderful challenge! This really helped me appreciate homemade bread! Not only is it cheaper, it's always tastier and healthier! 


Ingredients:
For Tangzhong (good for two loaves of bread):
  • 1/3 cup bread flour
  • 1 cup water (could be replaced by milk, or 50/50 water and milk)
For Bacon & Cheese Bread (Yield 1 loaf of bread):
  • 2½ cups bread flour
  • 3 Tbsp+2tsp sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 Tbsp+1tsp milk powder 
  • 2 tsp instant yeast
  • ½ of the tangzhong from above
  • ½ cup milk
  • 3 Tbsp butter (cut into small pieces, softened at room temperature)
  • ½ cup bacon bits and 1 cup shredded mild cheddar cheese (for filling)
Egg wash:
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 Tbsp. milk
  • a pinch of salt
Procedure: For tangzhong:
1. Mix flour in water well without any lumps. Cook over medium-low heat, stirring consistently with a wooden spoon, whisk or spatula to prevent burning and sticking while you cook along the way.
2. The mixture becomes thicker and thicker. Once you notice some “lines” appear in the mixture for every stir you make with the spoon, it’s done. Remove from heat.
3. Transfer into a clean bowl. Cover with a cling wrap sticking onto the surface of tangzhong to prevent from drying up. Let cool. The tangzhong can be used straight away once it cools down to room temperature. Just measure out the amount you need. The leftover tangzhong can be stored in fridge up to a few days as long as it doesn't turn grey. If so, you need to discard and cook some more. (Note: The chilled tangzhong should return to room temperature before adding into other ingredients. )
For Bacon and Cheese Bread:
1. Place flour, sugar, salt, powdered milk, egg, instant yeast and tangzhong into a mixer bowl. Using a dough hook, mix it at low speed. Gradually add in the milk until a soft dough is formed. Then, run the mixer for 10 minutes at speed 2. When the dough comes together, start adding the cubed butter and allow butter to be mixed into the dough at low speed. The dough should be smooth, elastic at this stage.
2. Knead the dough into a ball shape. Place in a greased bowl and cover with a wet towel or cling wrap. Let it proof until it's double in size, about 40 minutes (Note: the time will vary and depends on the weather. The best temperature for proofing is 80°F. Transfer to a clean floured surface. Deflate and divide the dough into four equal portions. Knead into ball shapes. Cover with cling wrap, let rest for 15 minutes.
4. Roll out each portion of the dough with a rolling pin into an oval shape. Sprinkle bacon and cheese evenly as much as you like. Roll from the upper, shorter end down to the bottom (as picture shown). Flatten the dough with your rolling pin. Then roll once again. The seals face down.
5. Arrange the rolled-up dough in a greased or non-stick loaf tin. Leave it for the 2nd round of proofing, about 40 minutes, or until the dough rises up to 3/4 of the height of the tin inside. Brush egg wash on surface. Bake in a pre-heated 350°F oven for 35 to 40 minutes. Remove from the oven and tin. Transfer onto a wire rack and let cool completely. Slice to serve or place in an airtight plastic bag or container once it's thoroughly cooled.
Check out what other Baking Partners members have shared this month! I'm sure you'll learn a lot from them!
If you want to either share or enhance your baking skills, join us for a monthly baking adventure at Baking Partners!

18 comments:

  1. Tina, your bread looks awesome, just the way I like...soft and fluffy...bacon and cheese are great together.
    Have a great week :)

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  2. Tina , what a beautiful bread ! Soft , fluffy and I bet very tasty :D Love this recipe of Christine's . Haven't made this one yet since she said that the dough is very wet and I don't have my stand mixer here :P

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  3. Delicious bread Tina, You nailed it down beautifully.

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  4. Woow This looks wonderful..Love the stuffing too..

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  5. Beautifully made....Looks wonderful

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  6. This looks yum - a great idea for a Sunday breakfast!!

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  7. Lovely rolls of rich goodness. Love them

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  8. Beautiful dear!! You always rock! :)

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  9. Love the layers in the bread.. Nice :)

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  10. Glad you bake a Tangzhong bread! Ever since I started baking bread and buns at home, that's the only method I used. The bread is just so soft and fluffy. Bacon and cheese sounds wonderful. I love how beautiful your bread came out. :)

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  11. What a gorgeous loaf of bread! I love that you stuffed it with bacon and cheese! I am like your family waiting for the bread to come out of the oven - the aroma is so enticing.

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  12. OK - I really need to make this! This looks delicious and so much fun to make. Thanks!

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  13. Lovely bake & I hope u'll win this challenge! It's always nice to be here seeing your nice food. Oh, in case u haven't met my son, hope over to Learn To Play Guitar Or Be A Dee Jay at Hard Rock Hotel, Penang! to check it out!

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  14. Hi Tina, it's always more healthy to baked our own bread. I love your this bacon and cheese bread, look so good. You sure is an excellent cook and baker. :)

    Best regards.

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  15. love the bacon and cheese filling..great job

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