Tuesday, October 12, 2021

Japanese Chocolate Milk Bread #BreadBakers

I have been MIA from blogging because I took on a night course and I barely have time to play Homescapes much less bake. Each time I am to bake something, life would throw a wrench at me – my ISP went down for multiple days multiple times (it's down right now), my house was flooded, I got surprise exams, my group members would disappear etc. We are about a month from the final exam and deeply mired in what feels like an impossible project. I have timers set on all the apps I usually waste time on and the timers don’t even matter because I am too busy to waste time. Seemed like a perfect time to bake something! 

Ha! I just desperately needed a break and baking is my stress-free zone. Plus, this month the bread bakers are using tangzhong and it has been a long time since I’ve done that. Thanks for the theme, Karen! For those who don’t spend their lives reading about bread techniques, here’s a quick primer on tangzhong. And after you have read that, be sure to try all the recipes listed below!

I kept things simple by grabbing a recipe from King Arthur and resisting the urge to make any changes. It’s amazing as is. It’s wonderfully soft and chocolatey and biting into the chocolate chips is honestly the best part. I think that some dark cherries would work rather well here too. This loaf barely lasted 24 hours in my house and I cannot wait to make it again. I saw suggestions to use it as French toast and such the like. I was too busy eating it as is to try that. 

Japanese Chocolate Milk Bread

14 grams bread flour
43 grams milk
43 grams water
Tangzhong Additions
57 grams butter
76 grams milk 
1 egg
1 tablespoon instant yeast
270 grams bread flour 
28 grams cocoa powder
50 grams sugar
1 teaspoon salt 
12 grams powdered milk 
1/2 cup chocolate chips
1 egg plus a tablespoon of water for egg wash


In a small saucepan, combine the tangzhong ingredients over medium heat. Stir until thickened. Don't walk away. If you have a thermometer, check that it has reached 150 F degrees. 
Transfer the tangzhong to a mixing bowl. 

Let it cool a bit then add butter, milk, an egg, and yeast. Stir well. 

Next, add flour, cocoa powder, sugar, salt, and powdered milk.  

Knead well until the dough is smooth and elastic. This could take up to 15 mins. Knead in the chocolate chips. One option is to save the chocolate chips for the shaping step. That might be easier. 

At this point, I put my dough in a greased bowl and allowed it to ferment in the fridge overnight. You can let it bulk ferment at room temperature until puffy (about 2 hours). 

When the dough, is ready, divide it into four equal pieces. Flatten each piece, flatten it into a 5" x 8" rectangle. You can sprinkle on the chocolate chips at this step if you have waited. Fold the rectangle into three as you would a letter. Flatten it once again but this time into a 3" x 6" rectangle. Now roll from the short side into a log. Be sure all your logs are the same size or you will have an uneven looking (but still delicious) bread.

Place each log in a greased 9" x 5" pan. 

Allow to proof at room temperature until puffy and cresting over the pan. 

When it is almost ready, preheat the oven to 350 F. 

Brush the proofed dough with egg wash and bake 25-30 minutes until a thermometer in the centre reads 190 F. Chocolate loaves are hard to judge as you can't base their readiness on colour. 

Cool. Eat. Make again.

Blurb: #BreadBakers is a group of bread loving bakers who get together once a month to bake bread with a common ingredient or theme. Follow our Pinterest board right here. Links are also updated each month on this home page.

We take turns hosting each month and choosing the theme/ingredient.

post signature