Raspberry Swirl Brioche

Sometimes I have blog posts that I can’t wait to put up. They’re so good, so pretty, so delicious that I’m just too excited to wait. I’m like a kid that made a macaroni picture and ran to show their parents before the glue was even dry. This is one of those posts!

The only thing is, I’ve had to make myself wait two months to put this recipe up! Do you know hard that was?! I wanted to post this back in May when I first made it, but I had to wait. You see, I made, shot, and edited a ton of recipes back in May because this summer, I am working away from home and therefore am without my camera, tripod, food props, mixer, equipment, etcetera etcetera. So I had to have enough posts stockpiled to last me through the summer, like a squirrel storing nuts for the winter. 

Every week, I wanted to post this Raspberry Swirl Brioche. But every week, I told myself, “No, just wait another week. Pace yourself.” The S'more Cream Puffs and Lemon Raspberry Macarons were “I can’t wait to post this” posts so I have to space them all out over the four months rather than posting them all at once.  

But finally I gave in and decided that it was damn well spaced out enough to finally post this beauty! The swirl loaf was inspired by The Fauxmartha, who was inspired by Sarah Keiffer. They both did theirs with chocolate, which would be absolutely stellar, but I decided to go for something a little brighter, more summery. 

I happened to have raspberry powder in my cupboard, something that is probably not in your cupboard. Certain baking/health food stores may have it, but you can easily buy it online. You can use it in just about anything to add a huge raspberry flavour without the added liquid from the fruit. It’s great to add to buttercreams, macarons, cakes, custards, cookies, and almost anything else that you can think of! It’s a bit pricey, but a little bit goes a long way. 

Raspberry Swirl Brioche
Recipe adapted from The Modern Cafe

Brioche Dough

335 g bread flour
9 g salt
50 g sugar
4 g instant dried yeast
78 g whole milk, at room temperature
135 g eggs, at room temperature
2 g vanilla extract
170 g unsalted butter, diced, pliable but not soft

Raspberry Smear

100 g unsalted butter, at room temperature
7 g raspberry powder
30 g vanilla sugar
1/2 lemon, juiced

To make the brioche dough, combine the flour, salt, sugar, and yeast in a medium bowl.

In a stand mixer, pour in the milk, vanilla extract, and 117 g of the eggs and stir to combine. Pour the dry ingredients on top. Mix on low speed until just incorporated.

Add one-third of the butter and switch the mixer to medium speed. Once that butter has been incorporated, add another third of the butter. Wait until it has been completely mixed in, then add the remaining butter.

Continue to mix on medium speed until full gluten development is achieved. To check for gluten development, perform a "window test". Stretch a small amount of dough with your hands. It should be elastic enough to be pulled until it is very thin and you can see through it without it ripping.

Add the remaining eggs and mix until just incorporated. At this point, the final dough 
temperature should not exceed 27 C/ 80 F.

Take the dough out of the bowl and place on a floured surface. Cover with plastic wrap. Allow it to ferment for 45 minutes.

Transfer the dough to a sheet pan lined with a silpat or greased parchment paper to prevent it from sticking. Wrap the sheet pan with plastic and refrigerate for at least an hour or up to 12 hours.

For the raspberry filling, combine all the ingredients in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment and mix until combined. 

Grease a 9 inch by 5.5 inch loaf pan with butter.

Roll out the brioche dough to a rectangle 12 inches by 16 inches, keeping the edges as straight as possible. Using an offset spatula, spread the raspberry filling on the rectangle, getting right to the edges.

Tightly roll up the brioche from the long side of the rectangle. Trim the ends of the roll. Cut the dough lengthwise almost to the top, leaving 2 inches of uncut dough at the top. Twist the two lengths of dough so the cut side is facing up. Very gently braid the dough by placing the left half over the right, then the new left half (was the right) over the new right (was the left). Continue until you have braided the whole roll. Gently press the end together. Carefully transfer the braided loaf into the loaf pan with the ends tucked under. 

Cover with plastic wrap and let it proof for 1 1/2 to 2 hours, until doubled in size. Do not put it in too warm of a spot or the butter will melt out.

Preheat the oven to 325 F.

Brush the loaf with egg wash. Bake the loaf for 16 minutes, then lower the temperature to 300 F and bake for a further 30 to 35 minutes, until the loaf is golden brown all over.

Remove from the oven and let it cool until it is cool enough to handle. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

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