Japanese milk bread was a previous obsession of mine. I began this year enamored with shokupan, an easily mixed together Japanese white bread, that we enjoy for sandwiches. Now I've moved on to another style of Asian white bread made with a glutinous rice flour roux that is changing my world. I'm almost done with the recipe, you should see it up here sometime next week. As I tweak the measurements, I decided to play around with the style of loaves I was making. Bread for toast and school lunches is important but I had a hankering for something slightly sweet as well. The front loaf is braided and brushed with cream before baking. At the end of the cooking time it is brushed with a coarse sugar syrup, leaving plenty of granules scattered across the crust, and baked for a final ten minutes to set. This bread gives me something a little more sweet and playful to enjoy out of hand. Next time I may play with dinner rolls and a loaf of chocolate or cinnamon swirl. Why limit yourself to what's expected? A great dough can do many different things.
February 9, 2005