Condensed Milk Square Pullman Loaf

Condensed Milk Square Pullman Loaf // Mono+Co Condensed Milk Square Pullman Loaf // Mono+Co

Watching my bread dough rises beyond the rim of the baking tin is one of my favorite kitchen highlights. But something about baking perfectly cornered square loaves sometimes lures me away from shaping dome loaves from time to time, and these tend to be plain milk recipes.

Other than making perfect symmetrical sandwiches, I enjoy turning this almost-brioche-texture bread into luxurious thick french toasts.  This is not something you will want to prepare if you are in a hurry as I make sure the bread slices soak up the custard thoroughly, and this could take up to 20 to 30 minutes.  Plus, I bake it in the oven for another 10 minutes just to make sure the custard gets cooked all the way inside the toast, even after frying them in the skillet.  So if you have really hungry kids waiting in line at the kitchen door for their breakfast, may I suggest regular omelettes on toast instead,  same ingredients but much faster.

Alternatively, make the french toasts with thinner bread slices to reduce the soaking time.  But still, make sure that the custard gets completely absorbed. Otherwise, it will just be cooking an omelette on the surface of the bread, which bring us back to my earlier suggestion.  This video perfectly illustrates the importance of the additional soaking and baking step.  It might just make you wake up an hour earlier to do the prep work, like how it did for me.

Coupled with homemade jam like this, breakfast gets extra brownie points, though I would have settled with just honey or maple syrup when the (cheaper) berry season is over.

Condensed Milk Square Pullman Loaf // Mono+Co


Condensed Milk Potato Bread

100g potato, cooked and mashed
200g bread flour
20g top flour
1 teaspoon instant yeast
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons condensed milk
45g liquid**
36g butter
1/2 large egg (around 35g)

**  You can add liquid of your preference such as fresh milk, soy milk, plain water or water remained from cooking potatoes with, along as they are chilled or room temperature, never boiling hot.

In a mixing bowl, combine bread flour, top flour, instant yeast, salt with a hand whisk to mix the dry ingredients.

Add mashed potatoes, condensed milk, beaten egg (roughly 35g) and liquid of your choice.  I  made mine with fresh unsweetened soy milk.  Start the mixer on low speed (KA 1) to knead the ingredients to form a dough.  Stop the mixer and rest the dough for 15 minutes.  After the resting time is up, turn on the mixer again to continue kneading the dough, this time with cold cubed butter added, one by one.  Knead this dough till window pane stage, a must for soft, cotton-like Asian style bread.

Turn off the mixer, and let dough bulk rise covered for 1 hour, it should expand considerably up to twice its original size.  After an hour, punch the dough down to and transfer it to a clean and dry worktop.  Divide the dough into three equal portions, roll them into balls and let it rest for 15 minutes.   wl from the As soon as the bread dough reaches almost the top of the tin, it is covered and the bread should continue to rise well within the next 15 minutes to reach all corners of the enclosed tin, while my oven is being preheated.

Take a ball of dough, and flatten it to remove any air trapped inside.  With a rolling pin, flatten it into a longish piece, and roll this up into a cylinder, like a swiss roll.  Repeat with the other two balls of dough.  With seam side facing downwards, place them in a bread tin, and let it rise in a draft-free area for 40 minutes.  As soon as the bread dough reaches almost the top of the tin, it is covered and the bread should continue to rise well within the next 15 minutes to reach all corners of the enclosed tin, while my oven is being preheated.

After 40 minutes, check if the bread dough has risen to fill about 90% of the tin.  As soon as it has risen to that height, cover the bread tin and it should continue to rise well within the next 15 minutes to reach all corners of the enclosed tin.  Bake in a preheated oven at 210C for 40 minutes.

Unmold done bread from bread tin and cool it completely on a rack, before slicing or serving.

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Black Sesame Potato Loaf

Black Sesame Potato Bread Loaf // MonoandCoBlack Sesame Potato Bread Loaf // MonoandCo

Bread yoga time!

I like doing such strange things to my bread when they turn out this soft.  A reminder to myself that this proportion of ingredients works very well.  The crust also browned nicely, largely due to the higher amount of butter.

I have read from somewhere that black sesame seeds are better eaten grounded than as seeds, just like the flaxseeds.  So a white bread recipe incorporating black sesame powder sounds like a good idea given its medicinal benefits.

Although toasting and grounding the seeds wouldn’t take up much time given that this recipe only needs 3 tablespoons of it, I had some ready black sesame powder that I like to eat with my muah chee, so I used that instead.

Black Sesame Potato Bread Loaf // MonoandCoBlack Sesame Potato Bread Loaf // MonoandCo Black Sesame Potato Bread Loaf // MonoandCoBlack Sesame Potato Bread Loaf // MonoandCoBlack Sesame Potato Bread Loaf // MonoandCo Black Sesame Potato Bread Loaf // MonoandCoBlack Sesame Potato Bread Loaf // MonoandCoBlack Sesame Potato Bread Loaf // MonoandCoBlack Sesame Potato Bread Loaf // MonoandCo


BLACK SESAME POTATO BREAD LOAF

200g bread flour
20g top flour
100g potatoes, cooked + mashed
2 tablespoons raw sugar
3 tablespoons ground black sesame seeds
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon instant yeast
40g unsweetened soy milk
1 small egg (50g)
40g cold butter, cubed

Combine all dry ingredients : bread flour, top flour, sugar, ground black sesame seeds, salt and yeast in a mixer bowl, stir with hand whisk to mix them evenly.  Add cooled mashed potatoes, beaten egg, and soy milk and knead the ingredients with a dough hook into a ball dough on the lowest speed (KA 1).  Stop the mixture and let the dough rest for 15 minutes to let flour absorb the liquid well.

After the dough has rested, turn the mixer on low speed for about 1 minute.  Add the butter cubes one by one with the mixer running.  Knead the dough till window pane stage, then let the dough rest covered in the bowl for 1 hour to expand to twice its size.

After an hour, punch the dough down to deflate it and transfer the slightly sticky dough to a clean and slightly floured worktop.  Flatten dough to push out air bubbles inside the dough. Shape dough and place it inside the bread tin, seam side downwards. Let it proof for another 45 minutes to 1 hour, covered and placed in a draft free place.

Once the dough has rise over and above the brim, bake the bread in a preheated oven at 170C for 30 minutes.  After baking, remove the bread from the tin immediately and allow it to cool completely on a rack before slicing or serving.

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Gruyere Cheese Chia Seed Loaf

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This super soft bread loaf filled with Gruyere cheese cubes are really fluffy, I almost tore the dome top apart from the bread when I was removing the very fragile, steaming hot bread from the tin for cooling. Some part of the cheese melted and got stuck to the sides of the tin.  But luckily, even with a slight tear, exposing the interior of the steaming bread while cooling down did not do too much damage to the texture of the bread.  So the next time when I am adding cheese into the bread dough, I’ll make sure that the cheese are placed towards the center of the bread, where there are ample “cushioning” areas, so that after proofing, the cheese will not end up anywhere near the inner sides of the cake tin.

You might have also noticed that I have used a smaller cake tin instead of the usual bread tin that are taller.  I was thinking of a popover bread design, where the bread has a disproportionately huge crown, hoping that it might look interesting.  Before it went into the oven for baking, I made sure that the bread had risen above the brim, by at least half the height of the cake tin.  After a light misting with water and 30 minutes in the 170C oven, the bread rose further quickly.  As  you can see from the first photo, the crown was indeed bigger than the bread’s lower body.  But alas, the bread was too soft to stand upright for a nice shot.  Even when placed back into its baking tin, the whole loaf simply sank in, not that great a sight on photo too.

But all these doesn’t matter, because the bread was delicious.  The vegetarian Gruyere cheese I added really gave the bread a lovely savory flavor, I am so glad that I cut down on sugar to let the saltiness of the cheese gets through nicely.  I wish I had put in more, not every bite is cheesy though, but not before I figure out how to shape the bread with cheese inside without giving me a ‘meltdown’ incident like this loaf again.


GRUYERE CHEESE CHIA SEED LOAF


200g bread flour
30g oat flour
100g potato, cooked and mashed
1 teaspoon instant yeast
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon raw sugar
1 small egg 50g
40g water
40g cold butter, cubed
2 tablespoons chia seeds
30g Gruyere Cheese**, cubed

** I got my vegetarian Gruyere cheese cultured with non animal rennet from the brand Mainland. I am always looking for yummy vegetarian hard cheese, if you have come across any nice ones, let me know!

In a mixer bowl, combine bread flour, oat flour, yeast, salt and sugar and mix the dry ingredients evenly with a hand whisk.  Add cooled mashed potatoes, beaten egg, and water into the mixture and start the mixer on low speed (KA 1) with a dough hook to start kneading.  Once the ingredients come into a ball dough, stop the mixer and let the dough rest for 15 minutes.

After the dough has rested and the flour has absorb the liquid properly, turn the mixer on again on low speed for about 1 minute, before adding the butter cubes one by one with the mixer running. Knead the dough till window pane stage.  To incorporate chia seeds into the dough using the electric mixer, pour in the chia seeds in a steady stream from a spoon, alternating between speed 1 and 2 till the chia seeds are being mixed uniformly into the dough.  Alternatively, kneading the chia seeds into the dough manually on a clean worktop.  When done, let the dough rest covered in the bowl for 1 hour to expand twice its size.

After an hour, punch the dough down to deflate it and transfer dough to a clean slightly floured worktop.  The dough will be sticky, do not add too much, just enough to prevent hands from sticking to it, deflate dough to squeeze out air bubbles trapped inside.  Roll dough into a ball and flatten it to an oblong dough, arrange chopped cheese on the dough towards the center and roll up the dough to wrap the cheese within and place the rugby shaped dough inside the bread tin, seam side downwards. Let it proof for another 45 minutes to 1 hour, covered and placed in a draft free place.

I baked this in a 8″ x 3.5″ x 3″ rectangular cake tin to create a popover /muffin top proportion bread.  Grease the inner surface well with butter.  The dough rose to the brim within 35 minutes, and higher by 1 hour. Baked at 170C for 30 minutes.  If this is baked in a regular pull man pan, it will take 45 minutes to reach the brim and can be baked in the oven by 1 hour too.  After baking, remove the bread from the tin immediately and allow it to cool completely on a rack before slicing or serving.

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Vegan Chia Seed Loaf

vegan chia seed loaf // MonoandCovegan chia seed loaf // MonoandCovegan chia seed loaf // MonoandCo    vegan chia seed loaf vegan chia seed loaf // MonoandCo

Here’s another adaption of the potato bread recipe that I have been baking and modifying along the way.  This time I made it vegan without the usual butter, milk or eggs.  Olive oil and soy milk were used instead.

I also added a tablespoon of kinako, a kind Japanese roasted soy bean flour that you see on their mochi desserts.  I wanted to see if they add soy flavor to the bread since I am using soy milk, which I am sure is too bland to be tasted in breads.  However, the roasted bean smell was only apparent in the initial mixing stage, after proofing and baking, it was all gone.  So add it if you have it in your pantry.  If not available, omit it completely.

I am using this one from Daiso.

vegan chia seed loaf // MonoandCo


VEGAN CHIA SEED LOAF

210g bread flour
1 tablespoon kinako, optional
2 tablespoon raw sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 tablespoon instant yeast
80g potato, cooked+mashed
80g unsweentened soy milk
15g olive oil
2 tablespoons chia seeds

Place flour, soy bean flour, sugar, salt and yeast in a large mixing bowl, stir with a hand whisk to mix well these dry ingredients together.

Add soy milk, olive oil, and mashed potato, turn on the electric mixer on lowest speed (KA 1) and knead till the ingredients comes together into a dough ball.  If it is too dry to come together, add more soy milk, teaspoon by teaspoon, till the consistency is right.  Switch of the electric mixer and let the dough rest for 15 minutes.

After the dough has rested, knead till the dough reach window pane stage.  To incorporate chia seeds into the dough using the electric mixer, pour in the chia seeds in a steady stream from a spoon while the mixer is running, alternating between speed 1 and 2 till you see the chia seeds being mixed uniformly into the dough.  Alternatively, you can also do it the manual way, kneading the chia seeds into the dough on a clean worktop.  After adding the chia seeds, let the dough sit covered with a clean towel to expand double its size for an hour.

Punch dough down to deflate the expanded dough and transfer to a clean worktop.  With a rolling pin, or bare hands, deflate dough to squeeze out air bubbles trapped inside the dough.  Roll dough into a rugby ball shape to fit your bread tin. Let it proof for another 45 minutes to 1 hour, covered and placed in a draft free place.

After its final proof, mist the top of the bread slight with water, bake bread in a preheated oven at 170C for 30 minutes, till golden brown.

Remove bread from its tin immediately after baking and let it cool completely on a rack before slicing/ serving it.  Store in airtight container.

Make it Healthier : Oatmeal Potato Bread Loaf

Oatmeal Potato Bread // Mono+CoOatmeal Potato Bread // Mono+Co

I am on a bread baking lucky spree, you know, the period when every single thing you modify to a recipe turns out 101% successful?  This was made with adding oat flour (diy!) and raw sugar to amp up its feel-good factor.  Very glad that this oatmeal loaf recipe has turned out so well.  The dough rose over and above the tin, creating these stretchy structure below the crown that are really pleasing to the eyes after baking.  As with the other potato breads that I have baked, the interior is soft and fluffy.

I have been baking this recipe at 170C degrees, and this is my preferred oven temperature nowadays, instead of 180-190C. Baking at this temperature for at least 30 minutes achieves the most delicate, softest, yet golden brown crust, my essential requirements for bread loaves are that are both cottony and great looking.  As I usually bake for next day’s breakfast, I find that breads baked at this temperature also stay soft longer.  Breads I have baked with thicker crusts tend to turn crummy next day which lead to more clean up work after breakfast.  No good.

Oatmeal Potato Bread // Mono+CoOatmeal Potato Bread // Mono+Co

Slice this super soft loaf with a good bread knife.  I recently acquired a new one only to realize what a world of difference it made.  Too often, I destroy my perfectly baked pillowy loaf with a lousy bread knife that squash my bread more than slicing it.  Now I can serve perfectly sliced breads for breakfasts, thin or thick, without any problem!

Oatmeal Potato Bread // Mono+Co


OATMEAL POTATO BREAD

100g bread flour
100g plain flour
30g oat flour **
100g cooked+mashed potatoes
2 tablespoons raw sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 tablespoon instant yeast
1 egg ***
40-50g water
40g cold butter, cubed
2 tablespoons oatmeal, and more for topping

** If oat flour is not a regular item in your pantry, no need to buy a bag just for this recipe.  Simply run oatmeal/rolled oats in a processor till fine, that’s your oat flour.  Or omit this completely and coat dough with more oatmeal on top before baking.

*** I use 1 small whole egg, weighing about 50g with shell.  If you have larger eggs (70g and above), use half of a beaten egg.

*** Use water left over from boiling the potatoes with, this water contains starch from the potatoes and are great for making bread.  Remember to cool them down to room temperature before using.

In a mixer bowl, place bread flour, plain flour, oat flour, potatoes, raw sugar, salt, yeast, and mix these dry ingredients well with a spoon.  Add beaten egg and 40g of water.  Turn the mixer on, with a dough hook, knead ingredients on low speed (KA:1).  Watch the ingredients as it gathers to form a dry ball dough, if it doesn’t, slowly add more water from a pouring cup, and stop when a dough is formed.  Let the mixer knead this dough for another 2 minutes.  Then leave this dough aside for 15 minutes to allow the flour to absorb the liquid properly, a process known as autolyse method.

After 15 minutes, turn the mixer on again on low speed, you might notice that the dough is now slightly more elastic than before, let mixer run for a minute before adding cubed cold butter one by one, till they get mixed well into the dough and there is no visible sight of solid butter.

Continue to knead this dough to reach window pane stage, it should look and feel smooth and elastic.  Remove mixing bowl from mixer, cover bowl with a clean towel, and let it rise for an hour.

After an hour of rising, punch dough down to deflate and transfer to a clean worktop.  If the dough is too sticky, grease hands and worktop with some butter for easier handling.  With a rolling pin, or bare hands, deflate dough to squeeze out air bubbles trapped inside the dough.  Roll dough into a rugby ball shape to fit your bread tin, roll it over a plate filled with 2 tablespoons of oatmeal, place the dough inside baking tin, seam side down.  We will coat more on the top after the dough rise to the top of the tin.  Let it proof for another 45 minutes to 1 hour, covered and placed in a draft free place.

After its final proof, mist the top of the bread slight with water, sprinkle generously with more oatmeal to your liking, tap lightly to make the toppings adhere better to the dough.  Bake bread in a preheated oven at 170C for 30 minutes, till golden brown.

Remove bread from its tin immediately after baking and let it cool completely on a rack before slicing/ serving it.  Due to the weaker interior structure of this bread when it is steaming hot, I cool it lying on its side to prevent the bread from collapsing on its weight.  After cooling down, the crust structure will become more stable and the bread will be able support its own weight upright.

Make Them Softer : Mini Walnut Bread Rolls

Walnut Mini Rolls // Mono+Co Mini Walnut Bread Rolls // Mono+Co Make Them Softer: Mini Walnut Bread Rolls // Mono+Co Make Them Softer : Mini Walnut Bread Rolls // Mono+Co

For the past few months, I have been on a bread baking spree converting a few bread recipes to include mashed potatoes as an additive.  This walnut roll’s  original recipe is from a Japanese baker/author Backe Akiko, whose backyard garage cafe I really envy.  Her recipes requires only basic ingredients, but I wish they have a more “squishable” bite.

Enter the mashed potatoes.

I halved the original recipe, tweaked the flour and water amount with added potato and the end result is a softer bun.  As the dough is quite wet, I suspect I might have used easily another 2-3 grams of butter when oiling my hands and work top to make the handling of the dough easier without sticking.

I served them with Japanese curry for breakfast and thought they made a perfect match, although the bread rolls can also be great on their own too, or simply add a spread of butter for a quick on the go snack.

~ Enjoy!


MINI WALNUT BREAD ROLLS

largely adapted from Backe's book here

60g mashed potatoes**
100g bread flour
 1/2 tablespoon sugar
 1/4 teaspoon salt
 1 teaspoon instant yeast
 40g water***
 2g chilled butter
 25g walnuts, chopped

** Potatoes are boiled, mashed and cooled to room temperature before use.
*** You may like to use the starchy water left behind from boiling the potatoes with, cooled to room temperature.

In a mixer bowl, combine the flour, sugar, salt and instant yeast with a hand whisk to mix well the dry ingredients together.  Add mashed potatoes, and start the mixer running with a dough hook on the lowest speed.

Slowly drizzle the cooled potato water into the mixture with a pouring cup, or spoon by spoon, and when the mixture gathers into a ball, stop adding water.  As the quantity of ingredient is really quite small for the dough hook to reach in the big mixer bowl, halfway through the liquid addition, it will be a good idea to stop the mixer and use a spoon to manually incorporate the wet and dry ingredients together, otherwise you may end up adding too much water. Add butter and knead the dough till window pane stage.

Pour all the 25g chopped walnuts into the mixer to incorporate the nuts into the dough.  The dough will be wet and sticky, but still manageable with oiled hands/fingers.  Stop the mixer, and place dough in a greased bowl for its first proof, around 45 minutes.

The dough would have risen to about twice its original size after 45 minutes, punch down the dough to deflate it, and transfer the dough to a clean work top.  Grease the work top if the dough is too sticky.  Divide the dough into 3 portions, roughly roll them into balls, place on work top, cover and let the dough relax for 10 minutes.

After 10 minutes, deflate to squeeze out any air bubbles trapped in the dough balls, and then shape them into balls again, and arrange them in a greased 8″x3.5″x3″ rectangular cake tin.  Let it go through its final proof before baking, covered and placed in a draft free place, around 45 minutes.

When ready to bake, make sure that the oven has been preheated to 190C.

Bake for 15-18 minutes, till the bread are golden brown.

Remove from oven and cool on rack before serving.  If you want a soft crust, brush melted butter over the bread now while they are fresh hot out of the oven.

If not eaten immediately, store in an airtight container to keep the bread rolls soft after they have cooled down.

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