Hi everyone! Hope all of you are safe and staying positive through all this chaos! In response to what we've been seeing in our community, we thought it's time to share some essential pantry recipes that are still doable in our current circumstance. I know most of our grocery stores are out of loaf bread. So we are sharing a recipe on making easy milk bread loaf so that you can still have bread at home even when the shelves are empty at the markets!
We want to thank you all for continuing to keep up with us during these times of hardship and would love to help out as much as we can. So if you have culinary questions need answers, we would love to help you solve them! Just comment below or contact us via social media!
Now let's dive into making some amazing, pillowy loaf bread for your family!
FAQs and tips to make these pillowy loaves of milk bread:
What is tangzhong?
Tangzhong is a baking technique where a ratio of water or some type of liquid is cooked with some flour to make a "water roux."
This technique of cooking flour allows more liquid to be worked into your dough because flour absorbs more liquid when the liquid is hot. Also, cooking your flour cooks the gluten, making your dough less "glutinous," which results in a spongier and lighter bread. This is why asian bakeries bread are always so light and airy!
In the case of this specific recipe, the liquid ratio is more than what you see in traditional milk bread recipes. The result is a stickier looser dough before baking, and an incredibly moist and still spongy loaf after baking!
Before cooked, tangzhong is super thin.
After cooking for a few minutes, it thickens and bubbles a bit.
Must I use dry milk powder?
Personally, I don't think dry milk powder is absolutely necessary. I've tried both with and without milk powder and the bread texture doesn't seemed to be very noticeably affected. However, I did note a slight taste difference. Milk bread with milk powder does smell more aromatic and taste milkier than the ones without.
We use Carnation brand milk powder and so far it hasn't done us wrong.
If you don't feel like buying a jar of milk powder just for a few pastries, it's totally understandable.
My dough is really wet. Is that right?
For this specific recipe, it is okay if you dough is on the wetter side. This will make your bread extra moist!
To make the dough a little easier to handle, you can proof the dough in the fridge to stiffen it a bit. Do note that this will increase the proofing time.
The dough is super sticky after kneading. We just plop it into a clean bowl with a bowl scraper.
After proofing, the dough is doubled and becomes a bit smoother and less sticky.
You can also slather your work surface and hands with oil to prevent the dough from sticking as much. However, don't drown your dough in oil! You can also drizzle more oil if needed.
Can I make this by hand?
Absolutely! You can make this milk bread by hand or with a stand mixer. However, highly recommend using a bowl scraper because the dough is quite wet.
To make the loaf by hand, follow the recipe as is. Replace paddling the dough by mixing the dough until it just comes together with a fork or your hands. Then add the soften butter and knead with your hand until the entire mixture and is thoroughly combined and no dry spots are visible. Continue mixing for a few more minutes. Follow the remainder of the recipe as is.
Once the dry ingredients are basically moisten and looks crumbly like this, add the butter and switch to a dough hook attachment.
How to shape your milk bread loaf:
After kneading the air out of your dough, flatten your dough into an oval disc.
Fold the first 1 ½ inch dough onto itself and press along the edges to seal it.
Continue to repeat this motion until you reach the end. Gently tuck the pointy ends under the loaf.
Transfer the dough into a greased pan with the seam on the bottom.
After it doubles again, brush it with egg wash and sprinkle with seeds if you wish!
Yum, yum, yum! But make sure to let it cool completely before slicing!
Stay safe and bake with love!
If you made this recipe or any recipe from our blog, please tag us on Instagram @twoplaidparons! We would love to see your creations! It absolutely makes our day! 🥰
Classic Milk Bread Loaf
For the tangzhong:
- 2 Tablespoon all-purpose flour (or bread flour)
- ¼ cup milk
- 3 Tablespoon water
For the dough:
For egg wash:
- 1 large egg yolk (for egg wash)
- 1 Tablespoon water
- Seeds (optional for garnish)
For the tangzhong:
- Mix the flour, milk, and water in a small saucepan until no flour lumps are visible.Heat over medium heat while constantly stirring until the mixture thickens and has big bubbles.
- Remove from heat and transfer to a clean bowl. Let the tangzhong cool in the fridge until needed.
For the dough:
- Activate and dissolve the yeast in warm milk. Stir it every so often, about 5 minutes.
- Combined flour, sugar, salt, dry milk powder, egg, milk with dissolved yeast, and the cooled tangzhong in the stand mixer bowl. Paddle the mixture on low until crumbly.
- Add the butter and switch to the dough hook and mix on medium low speed for about 2 minute until the dough is combined and no longer look dry.Increase the speed to medium high and mix for an additional 5 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed. *The dough will be quite wet and sticky.*
- Transfer dough to a clean bowl and let it proof until dough doubles in size, about 1 hour. *You can also let the dough proof in the fridge for a few hours so that your dough is easier to handle.*
- Once the dough has doubled, transfer it to a well oiled work surface. With oiled hands, knead the dough onto itself about 10 times .
- Flatten the dough out with your hands into an oval disc, about 9x6 inches. Fold 1 ½ inch of the dough onto itself and seal the edge. Repeat this fold and seal motion until you reach the end and have an elongated football shape dough. Tuck the pointed ends under the loaf to make a long rounded rectangle.
- Transfer the dough, seam side down, into a greased loaf pan. Cover with plastic wrap and let it proof until almost doubled, about 45 minutes to 1 hour.
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- Beat together egg yolk and water to make egg wash. Brush the top of the loaf with egg wash and sprinkle your favorite seeds on top or keep it plain.
- Bake the bread for about 30 minutes, or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean. *If the bread browns too much before it's done baking, cover with foil and continue baking until it's baked through.*
- Remove the loaf from the oven and cool for about 10 minutes. Remove it from the loaf pan and let it cool completely on a wire rack before slicing.
- Enjoy by itself or make a sandwich!