we can find brioches at every street corner in france, but nothing compares to the ones you bake at home. first because it smells so good in the whole house, and then because the taste is wonderful.
so wonderful that you take one slice, then another, and before you know it there's nothing left!
and this can be quite frustrating, as it takes time to make it, and in 10 minutes it's gone. but as we say in french, "c'est l'jeu ma pauvre lucette" (which basically means "that the way it goes", or "that's what you get when you play this game") !
it is not hard to make if you're using a stand mixer, but it's quite long as the dough should rise twice: once in the bowl, once in the baking mold. so you need to have some time ahead of you.
this recipe is very simple, and it makes the best brioche we've had so far: soft and airy on the inside, with a thin crispy crust on the outside.
we bake it in a kouglof baking pan, to have a beautiful shape that will impress all your teatime guests!
for one large brioche:
250 g sifted flour
90 g butter (cut in small pieces)
20 g salted butter (cut in small pieces)
5 cl (50 g) lukewarm milk (not too warm, otherwise the yeast might not be able to activate)
3 tbsp sugar
1 dose dry baker's yeast (about 5 g)
preheat the oven to 180 °C (360 F).
dissolve dry yeast in lukewarm milk for about 5 minutes.
in a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, mix gently flour, eggs, sugar, and yeast-milk mixture.
add the butter and salted butter and mix until perfectly combined.
cover with a wet tea towel and let rest in a warm place (next to a heater for example), until it doubles in size. this should take at least 1 hour.
butter and flour a baking pan. you can add some whole almonds in the bottom.
work the dough again for a few minutes, using a wooden spatula, then pour the dough in the baking pan, onto the almonds.
cover with a wet tea towel and let rise again for 1 hour in a warm place.
bake at 180°C (360 F) for 30 minutes, then at 160°C (320 F) for 10 minutes. a knife should come out clean.
piece of advice:
if you don't own a stand mixer, that's ok. you can of course make a perfectly good brioche using the strength of your arms! it will take a little longer though
don't hesitate to replace the almonds by roasted pistachios, nuts, or anything you like!