Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Chocolate Milk Buns

I was toying with an idea, and after some consultation with Rei, the idea for a chocolate milk bun was conceived. She had suggested that I add cocoa powder to plain milk instead of using chocolate flavoured milk. I have always wanted to try the Hokkaido Milk Loaf since I first read about it on Happy Home Baking. I dashed off after work to get Bulla Thickened Cream just for this. There is still so much cream left, looks like we'll be having lots of this loaf, plus the cream cheese bread too.

As I don't like the thick crust created by the breadmaker, I decided to bake the bread in the oven. Part of the reason was also due to time constraint. By the time the dough was ready for baking, it was almost 10 pm. I had miscalculated earlier while trying to hurry. I had wanted to let the breadmaker run 20 minutes of the dough cycle, add butter and run the whole 1.5 hours of the dough cycle. If I had done that, I would have started to bake probably around 9.30 pm. I thought after a while that it would be much faster if I just let the machine ran the white bread cycle and bake as well. So I stopped the machine, change to function 1 and started. But it just wouldn't start, as the temperature inside was too high! OMG, I had to wait for almost 10 minutes before it could start again. I was worried that the dough would start to ferment. I guess for bread, there isn't much harm in over-kneading? Or is there? I won't know till someone tries the bread.

After I took the dough out, I rolled and pressed it to get rid of air, as suggested by Rei. After putting them into the pan, I didn't want to take the chance to proof it in room temperature. It was already past 9 pm then. So I set the oven at 40 deg C, placed a bowl of water inside beside the loaf pan. Thank God the dough rose to almost 80% of the loaf pan's height. I almost gave up waiting as I was worried that the dough would bake in there! Unfounded fear anyway, as I thought the temperature inside the breadmaker felt higher than that inside the oven.

I quickly removed the loaf pan and water, brushed the top with some milk and sprinkled some sugar while the oven was preheating. Then I baked it for 25 minutes at 180 deg C. While it was baking, I could smell the aroma, probably of the chocolate and milk. Finally, the baking was done and I removed it from the oven and then the pan. I was worried, as the top of the bread felt really hard. I thought perhaps the dough was over-kneaded or over-baked. To hasten the cooling, I broke the buns up. I could not resist and tore off some "membrane" to taste. There was no hint of chocolate at all, but the bread was fluffy and soft! No wonder it's a favourite among so many.

I had originally intended to add some chocolate chips when I shaped them into smaller balls. It was in the oven proofing before I remembered about the chocolate chips. Next time may be. Rei also told me that she tried making chocolate flavoured SWEET buns. I shall look up some sweet bun recipes to see how to improve on my chocolate flavoured bread, it's a request of my boy. Hope he would eat this bread tomorrow morning...

The verdict (19 Mar): Bread is not soft at all! Must have overdone the dough ...
Taste Test (21 Mar, Good Friday): I steamed the bread this morning and they were soft again. Guess steaming (or maybe toasting) will always help. Once cool, not that good again :(

6 comments:

Rei said...

Hi Yuri, no choco taste huh? Bcos I remember salah.. ahahaha... Previously I tried adding 2 tbsp of cocoa powder to 1/3 portion of dough, that's why ended up 'chao da' look... paisey paisey.. pls try again.. :p

Yuri said...

Hey Rei, its ok lah. Anyway ate the bread this morning, not soft :( maybe really over did the dough. I must say colour of bread is quite nice tho...

gina said...

adeline, one thing to note about using cocoa powder. Cocoa powder is bitter. But it gives a nice aroma of chocolate during baking. if you want to taste real chocolate, then i teach you my method. Use a good chocolate drink powder like Godiva's or Ghiradelli's These kind of chocolate powders are already sweetened, so it will not be as bitter as regular cocoa powder. the last time I had this was to use Godiva's Hazelnut Chocolate powder in place of the cocoa powder. If you want to put chocolate chips, your bread dough must be airy, fluffy or it will pull the dough down. So best to put on top, instead of inside the bread.

Yuri said...

Thanks gina! Looks like time to invest in good choc powder. Looking forward to your future classes.

cocoa said...

Yuri,
Answer your question regarding the bread improver from my post.
The cocoa bun looks interesting. I agree that when we use the breadmaker to bake the crust is quite thick. I have been wanting to make some bun and roll but I just don't have extra time to let the roll proof outside the breadmaker :(

Yuri said...

Thanks cocoa. Yes, baking bread requires a long time compared to cakes. Although I have to add, there's a lot less work when baking bread esp with a breadmaker. Anyway, due to the boo boo, the buns are a little dry.