Monday 22 February 2021

Yudane Milk Bread

Fascinated by the use of yudane approach to create bread with beautiful texture by some of the home bakers shared over the IG, I was drawn into trying out this interesting method. Yudane method is similar to tangzhong 汤种 in terms of gelatinised the starch in the flour to improve the moisture content, as well as the texture of the bread.  The flour to water ratio for tangzhong is 1:5, while the yudane is 1:1. To me, yudane is easier to prepare as it only involves pouring hot boiling water to flour, while tangzhong needs to be heat up and stir over the stove.

However, I tweak the yudane method by using hot water instead of boiling water. Our warm environment with daily average day temperature ranging between 27 to 31℃, should be fine to use hot water of around 90 to 80℃ to prepare a small amount of yudane dough😉 But, I needed to warm up the container or cup used in preparing the yudane dough before adding the flour and hot water. This is to minimize heat loss to the surrounding - applying the science concept I learned during school days, hehe 😆

I love the bread prepared using the yudane method - heavy, dense, and yet spongy and moist 😍

Update: 27 Feb 2021
Added more yudane dough and increase the proportion of superfine wholegrain flour in my second attempt. The bread was softer and can last longer😍 The new quantities have been updated in the recipe below in ( ).

Update: 10 March 2021
The bread could last for 4 days and still soft, though a bit dry on the surface 😀

Yield: one loaf
Pan size: 21x13x10 cm 1.5L
Raw dough weight: 623g (638g) 
Baking temperature: Preheat oven to 190℃, lower rack, bake at 180℃ for 15 minutes, reduce to 170℃ for 15 minutes, turn off oven and continue to bake for 5 minutes.

Yudane dough
15g (21g) bread flour, room temperature
14g* (20g) very hot water, 80 to 90℃

* I prefer to reduce the standard water volume by 1g, to make the dough less sticky.

1. Pour some hot water to a silicone cup or any non-metal cup, and let it warm up the cup for about 1 to 2 minutes. 
Using non-metal cup helps to store some heat in the cup, and minimise heat loss to the surrounding during mixing later.

2. Pour away the hot water, and pour the bread flour into the cup. Dig a hole in the middle of the flour.

Pour 14g (20g) of hot water to the flour.

Pause for about 15 seconds before mixing the ingredients into a sticky dough.

The dough will be about 50℃ after mixing.

3. Wrap the yudane dough using cling wrap.

Let the yudane dough cool down to room temperature before cooling in the fridge. The usual practice is to keep the yudane dough in the fridge overnight, but I only kept it in the fridge chiller for about 20 to 30 minutes, or till the yudane dough was cold. The yudane dough has a better texture after overnight chilling.

If you want to keep the yudane dough overnight, keep it in a small plastic container before storing in the fridge.

Milk Bread Dough
Ingredient A
250g (230g) bread flour
30g (50g) superfine wholegrain flour/bread flour
40g raw sugar
2g instant dry yeast

Ingredient B
50g natural yeast/sourdough, 100% hydration
28g (40g) yudane dough from above, cold
10g evaporated milk/milk
160g milk, cold
15g beaten egg
15g (20g) water, cold, to be added depending on dough condition

3g low-sodium salt
30g unsalted butter, softened

some milk as milk wash before baking
butter-honey wash after baking
(melt 1~2g unsalted butter + 1 drop honey + tiny amount of salt)

You can knead the dough till window pane using your prefer method. 

1. Mix Ingredient A in a mixing bowl.

2. Mix in Ingredient B. Use a silicone spatula to transfer the sticky yudane dough from the cling wrap to the dry mixture. Break the yudane dough into smaller pieces using a silicone spatula to ease mixing later.
Mix the ingredients into a ball using a spoon stir in one direction. Cover the dough and let it rest for about 20 minutes.

3. Use an electric hand mixer fitted with a pair of dough hooks to knead the dough till smoother., about 2 minutes at low speed. Add in the salt, and continue to knead for about 1 minute at low speed.

Knead in the softened butter till no trace of butter can be seen.

Perform about 500 sets of "slaps and folds" or till the dough reaching window pane stage. I took about 15 to 20 minutes to complete them.
Kneading dough is like a mild workout that drives up your heart beats.
Burn calories but not the fuel - a slogan taken from a rental bicycle

The slaps and folds

Reaching window pane

4. Shape the dough into a ball, spray some water over, cover with a lid, and let the dough undergo first proofing for about 75 minutes, or till double in size.

75 minutes later

5. Invert the dough over a floured worktop, deflate and divide into 2 portions. Shape into two balls, cover, and let them rest for 15 minutes.

6. Roll out a dough to about 1 cm thick.

Flip over and fold in the two wings towards the middle.

Roll flat the dough to a more even thickness

Roll up the dough into a swiss-roll shape.

Place the shaped dough into the bread pan coated with butter. Spray some water over, cover with a tea cloth, and let them proof for about 60 minutes, or reaching the rim of the pan.

End of 60-minute proofing.

7. Preheat the oven to 190℃ for about 10 minutes. While waiting, brush a thin coat of milk over the dough.

Bake at lower rack, reduce the temperature to 180℃ after closing the oven door, and bake for 15 minutes. Further reduce to 170℃ for about 14 minutes. Turn off the oven, and continue to bake for about 3 to 5 minutes.

While waiting for the bread to bake through, melt the butter-honey wash in a rice cooker using "Keep Warm" mode for about two minutes, or till the butter melted.

8. Un-mould the bread soon after leaving the oven.

Brush butter-honey wash over the hot crust.

Let the bread cool down to room temperature.

tiny grains of salt over the shiny crust

9. Slice and enjoy 😋

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