Brioche Wool Roll Loaf filled with Praline Gianduja. Mmmm. This soft and fluffy brioche is feathery-light, yet rich with eggs and butter and then filled with a decadent praline gianduja. What is praline gianduja? Think “Nutella” but with lovely notes of caramel. Oh my.
This recipe also uses tangzhong (a cooked slurry of water and flour) which contributes to this bread’s airiness, makes it extra pillowy and helps keep the bread fresh and soft for days.
Praline gianduja is a confection of roasted hazelnuts, caramel and dark chocolate. It’s decadent and so delicious (especially when tucked into a fluffy, pillowy loaf of brioche). My recipe for Praline Gianduja makes three cups. You will only need one cup for this Brioche Wool Roll Loaf, but will be happy for the extras.
For some helpful tips before you begin, click here. (Recommended)
FOR THE PRALINE GIANDUJA:
- 1 cup (300 g) Praline Gianduja*
FOR THE BRIOCHE:
- 6 tablespoons (90 ml) water
- 2 tablespoons (18 g) bread flour
- 1/4 cup (60 ml) water
- 1/4 cup (50 g) sugar, divided
- 1/2 tablespoon (5 g) active dry yeast
- 3 large eggs
- 1 1/4 cups (150 g) all-purpose flour
- 1 1/4 cups (163 g) bread flour
- 1/4 cup (31 g) powdered milk
- 1 teaspoon (6 g) fine salt
- 1/2 cup (1 stick or 113 g) unsalted butter, softened
- 1 egg yolk beaten
- 1 tablespoon (15 ml) water
*See my recipe for Praline Gianduja. Make the gianduja using 200 g dark chocolate.
1. Make the tangzhong.
– In a small pan, over medium-high heat, combine water and bread flour for the tangzhong.
– Whisk constantly until thick and smooth like pudding, maybe 3 or 4 minutes.
– Pour into a small bowl and refrigerate to cool while gathering the remaining ingredients.
2. Activate the yeast.
– Warm the water to about 110°F (49°C). (Slightly warm to touch.)
– In a small bowl, stir together the warm water, 1 tablespoon (12.5 g) of the sugar and the yeast.
– Let sit for 5 to 10 minutes, until foamy.
3. Combine the ingredients.
– In the bowl of a stand mixer, briefly whisk together the all-purpose flour, bread flour, the remaining sugar, powdered milk and salt.
– Add the foamy yeast mixture, the cooled tangzhong and the eggs to the flour mixture.
– Stir with a wooden spoon until the flour has been absorbed and a shaggy dough forms.
4. Knead the dough until smooth and elastic.
– Using a stand mixer, knead the dough with the paddle attachment on low speed (setting #2) for about 30 seconds to a minute to bring the ingredients together.
– Increase to medium-high speed (setting #4) and knead until the dough transforms into a smooth, glossy, batter-like dough that pulls away from the sides of the bowl in sticky strands, about 7 minutes. The dough will be soft and sticky, but should also be very smooth and elastic.
Test the dough. (See TIPS.)
– Test if the kneading is done by pulling and stretching a bit of the dough. If the dough can be stretched thin enough to almost see light through it without tearing, it is ready. (The “windowpane test“.)
– If the dough does not pass the windowpane test, let it rest for 10 to 20 minutes and then re-test. If the dough still does not pass the windowpane test, knead for 3 minutes. Re-test the dough.
– Repeat (rest and knead) until the dough is smooth and elastic enough to pass the windowpane test.
- The dough will still be soft and sticky. That’s OK. Do not add any extra flour.
5. Gradually add the butter.
– Switch to the dough hook attachment. On low speed (setting #2), begin adding the butter a few tablespoons at a time, waiting for each addition to be incorporated before adding the next.
– Stop and scrape down the sides of the mixer as needed until all the butter is added and absorbed.
– Once all the butter is added, increase speed to medium-high (setting #4) and knead the dough for 5 more minutes until the dough is silky smooth and trying to pull away from the sides of the bowl and cling to the hook.
– The dough will be very soft, smooth and a little bit jiggly.
6. Let the dough rise until about double in volume. (First rise)
– Scrape the dough into a large, lightly greased bowl.
– With lightly greased fingers, gather up the dough by pulling up the sides and folding it into the center. Do this a few times to bring the dough together into a ball.
– Flip the dough and try to smooth the top as much as possible by tucking it under.
– Cover the dough with plastic wrap and let rise for 1 to 2 hours or until double in size.
7. Punch down the dough, reshape and refrigerate overnight. (Second rise)
– Once the dough has doubled in volume, punch it down to release all the built up gases.
– Reshape the dough by pulling up the sides (with lightly greased fingers) and folding it into the center to gather the dough into a ball.
– Flip the dough so that the top is smooth.
– Cover with plastic wrap and place it in the refrigerator.
– Let the dough rest in the refrigerator overnight, or for up to 2 days. (Any longer than 2 days and the dough may begin to smell “yeasty”.)
Punch down the dough as needed.
– You may need to punch down the dough once or twice as it continues to expand in the bowl.
– After punching the dough down, reshape, cover with the plastic wrap and return to the refrigerator.
8. Fill and shape the dough. (See TIPS)
– Grease the round pan with cooking spray. Line with parchment paper, if you wish.
– Remove the dough out onto a lightly floured surface.
– Divide the dough into 6 equal parts (use a scale, if you have one) and shape each into a smooth ball.
– Cover the dough balls loosely with plastic wrap and let rest for about 10 to 20 minutes.
– On a lightly-floured surface, roll out a rested dough ball with a lightly-floured rolling pin into a long oval about 4-inches wide and 8-inches long. Dust with flour as needed to prevent sticking.
– Using a dough scraper, slice just the top half of the oval into thin vertical strands.
– Spread about 2 tablespoons of praline gianduja on the bottom half of the oval.
– Roll up the dough snugly.
– Place the rolled up dough in the pan along the side seam-side down.
– Repeat with the remaining five dough balls, fitting them all along the side of the pan to make a ring.
9. Let the dough rise until ready to bake. (Third rise)
– Cover the brioche loosely with plastic wrap and place somewhere draft-free. Let rise about 1 hour, until about double in volume and ready to bake. If you lightly poke the bread, the indentation left by your finger should slowly bounce back half-way.
10. Preheat the oven BEFORE the brioche is done rising.
– After about 30 minutes into the third rise, preheat the oven to 350°F (176°C).
– Place the oven rack in the position just below the center.
11. Brush the brioche with egg wash and Bake.
– Whisk together the egg yolk and water for the egg wash.
– Brush the egg wash evenly over the top of the brioche loaf.
– Bake for about 40 minutes, until the brioche is deep golden brown with an internal temperature of 190°F (87°C).
– If the tops are browning too quickly, tent the brioche loosely with foil during the last minutes of baking.
12. Give the pan a good tap on the counter. Then let the brioche cool 5 minutes in the pan before Removing to a Cooling rack.
– Take the brioche out of the oven and give the pan a firm tap on the counter. (Lay a kitchen towel on the counter first to protect it from the hot pan.)
– Let cool about 5 minutes in the pan before removing out onto a cooling rack.
– Cool your brioche before slicing.
– Store covered at room temperature for up to a week.
– Cover any cut edges with plastic wrap pressed against the surface to prevent any drying out.
About this recipe
Fluffy Brioche Wool Roll Loaf filled with Praline Gianduja. It’s a lovely, decadent treat. Brioche is already rich with eggs and butter. Filled with a rich spread of roasted hazelnuts, caramel and dark chocolate, it’s spectacular. And the “wool roll” shaping of the dough give this loaf a delicately crisp crust and a soft interior that pulls apart in feathery layers.
This brioche recipe uses tangzhong (a cooked slurry of flour and milk often used in Asian breads, like Japanese Milk Bread) which not only makes this brioche even more soft and fluffy, but also promotes a longer shelf life.
- I use tangzhong in some of my other bread recipes, too, such as my Bahn Mi (Vietnamese Baguettes) and Soft and Airy Pandesal.
Here are 7 helpful tips:
1) Use a scale for consistent baking.
– While I sometimes find using volume measures more convenient, weight measures will give more accurate and consistent results. So if you bake regularly, you really should get a scale. (Preferably one that reads ounces and grams.)
2) Make sure the tangzhong is cooled.
– It is important the tangzhong is cooled before adding it to your bread mixture. If your tangzhong is too hot, it may damage the yeast.
3) Make sure your butter is softened.
– Butter will incorporate into the dough best when softened. Allow cold butter to sit out for at least 30 minutes to soften, or until you can press it with your finger and it will give beneath light pressure.
– To soften butter quickly: I usually cut my cold butter into thin pats or small cubes. Then after a few minutes, I mash the butter with the flat side of a knife or the back of a spoon until it becomes smooth and spreadable.
4) Be sure your yeast is active.
– Yeast must be active for bread to rise. You know your yeast is alive and active if it becomes foamy when dissolved in warm water between 100°F (38°C) and 110°F (49°C) with a little sugar stirred in.
- If the yeast doesn’t become foamy within 10 minutes, throw it out and try again.
- After your yeast has been activated, don’t let it sit too long or else the yeast will be less effective.
5) Knead until smooth and elastic.
– Proper kneading is necessary for bread dough to bake into the lightest, fluffiest, well-shaped loaves.
- The dough is ready when it is smooth and elastic enough to be stretched until light can shine through without tearing (the windowpane test).
If your dough didn’t pass the windowpane test:
– If you have kneaded for the allotted time but your dough is not passing the windowpane test, don’t stress.
- Rest your dough for 10 minutes (and up to 30 minutes) then test again. (It’s amazing what a little rest can do for dough’s smoothness and elasticity.)
- If the dough is still not smooth and elastic, knead for 3 minutes and then re-test.
- Repeat, if needed, until the dough passes the windowpane test.
Do not over-knead:
- If you start to feel the dough becoming firm and less stretchy, stop kneading or else you risk over-kneading your dough. Over-kneaded dough will become dry and dense with a hard crust.
Do not add flour:
- Brioche dough is very soft and sticky. That’s how it should be. Don’t add any extra flour. That will just weigh down your brioche.
- The dough will be firmer and much easier to work with after a night in the refrigerator.
6) Shaping your brioche wool roll loaf:
- Divide the dough into 6 equal parts (use a scale, if you have one) and shape each into a smooth ball.
- Cover the dough balls loosely with plastic wrap and let rest for about 10 to 20 minutes.
- On a lightly-floured surface, roll out a rested dough ball with a lightly-floured rolling pin into a long oval about 4-inches wide and 8-inches long.
- Dust with flour as needed to help with any stickiness.
- Also, use only light pressure when using the rolling pin. That will also help with any stickiness.
- Spread a couple of tablespoons of the praline gianduja on the bottom half of the oval.
- Using a dough scraper, slice just the top half of the oval into thin vertical strands.
- Roll up the dough snugly.
- Place the rolled up dough in the pan along the side seam-side down.
- Repeat with the remaining dough balls, fitting them all along the side of the pan to make a ring.
- Cover the pan with lightly greased plastic wrap and a towel. Let the wool roll bread rise for about an hour or until puffed and about double in volume.
- Brush the risen dough with the egg wash before baking.
7) Baking times vary. (Get an instant-read thermometer!)
– Ovens vary, so the baking times given are just estimates. It may take more or less time for your bread to bake, so it’s always good to check early and check often.
– Instant-read thermometers are the most reliable way to check for doneness. Bread is done baking when the internal temperature reaches 190°F (88°C).
– But if you do not have an instant-read thermometer, try tapping the bottom of the loaf. If it sounds hollow, it is done.
Want a little info on the origins of Nutella?
Fluffy Brioche Wool Roll Loaf (Tangzhong) filled with Praline Gianduja