Thursday, April 2, 2009

Brioche à Tête

"Let them eat brioche!" That is what Marie Antoinette actually said - not "Let them eat cake!

I've always been intrigued by this beautiful-looking bread with the knob on the top and now with the easy Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes a Day recipe, I decided to give it a try.  This beautiful and delicious Brioche à tête was so easy to make, even for a first-timer, like me! I think it's a perfect bread for Easter morning. There is something about the light airiness of it that says Spring to me. On my first attempt, the 'tête' came out a little lopsided :-)
The second attempt looked a little better!

It was delicious toasted with some dark cherry preserves!

I can't wait to try Pain Perdu with the rest of the brioche!

Brioche Dough
Printable Recipe
Makes about 4 loaves

The recipe can also be found by clicking here along with other ideas for using the brioche dough.

~This recipe can also be halved or doubled

1 1/2 cups lukewarm water
1 1/2 tablespoons granulated yeast (2 packets)
1 1/2 tablespoons kosher salt
8 large eggs, lightly beaten
1/2 cup honey
1 1/2 cups (3 sticks) unsalted butter, melted
7 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour

Egg wash - mix one egg with 1 tablespoon water

Mix the yeast, salt, eggs honey and melted butter with the water in a large, glass measuring cup or bowl.

Measure the flour into a large 5-quart, lidded container (such as one of those huge ice cream pails). Add the liquids, mixing with a wooden spoon until all of the flour is incorporated. You may need to use wet hands to get the last bit of flour incorporated.

Cover (not airtight), and allow to sit at room temperature for about two hours until it has risen and fallen back down.

Place covered dough in refrigerate until chilled. It can be used as soon as it is chilled and saved, refrigerated for five days. Unused dough can be frozen and thawed for future use.

When you are ready to bake the brioche, sprinkle the surface of the dough with flour and cut off a grapefruit-sized ball of dough. Reserve one small knob for the 'tete' or head. Sprinkle the ball with a little more flour and quickly shape into a ball by pulling the sides of the dough under two or three times. Please the dough into a buttered brioche pan (or you can make a loaf-shaped brioche in a loaf pan without the tete). Make a large indentation in the top of the brioche ball and quickly shape the small knob into a tear-drop shape and place the narrow end into the indentation. (I had to punch down the hole several times).

Allow the dough to rest for 1 hour and 20 minutes.

After 1 hour, turn oven to 350 F to preheat with pizza stone in the middle of the oven.

Allow oven to preheat for 20 minutes. Then brush the brioche with the egg wash and bake in the pre-heated oven for about 40 minutes or until golden brown.

Clic here for more interesting information on brioche.


  1. Since I have never made brioche this was very informative to me - there is such a thing as a brioche pan? It looks divine - I love home made breads of all kind. Even the lop-sided one looked good!! (I like the knob)

  2. Susan, your brioche à tête looks wonderful, even the lop-sided one. The fluted edges browned so beautifully.

    Cute Easter decor on the sidebar.

  3. It..they..are beautiful! I must try these!!!

    I love the Béret one too:)

  4. Susan, they're beautiful! It was very simple, wasn't it. I'm glad you tried it and liked it.

  5. It looks really good. I didn't know about the special pan shape either. You will have to try the brioche/nutella french toast.

  6. Hmm, you snuck this one in!
    It looks delicious..
    I must try not that I found my yeast spoon!
    Cute Easter pics on your sidebar!

  7. Well done! It just in a "pâtisserie"! I'm too lazy to do some I buy some to my baker's!!!
    I would have tried it with pleasure...

  8. Soory for this second comment but your brioche reminds me what my mum did to me for sundays breakfast when I was a child!
    She sliced it, add fesh unsalted butter on it and custar sugar...Hummm, just great!
    Thank you Susan for this very nice souvernir!!!!

  9. Some how I missed this! Love your little lopsided tete!


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