This month for Bread Bakers we are baking with Peppers. Our host for the month Sue of Palatable Pastime wanted us to bake a bread with some sort of pepper — fresh, dried, ground, hot or sweet. So my entry is this spicy and delicious Jalapeño Bread.
My sister buys this bread at a local bakery and it is very soft and very tasty. I’ve tasted it once or twice at her place, but don’t really remember how it looks or tastes. When I was thinking of making the bread, I asked her to take a video of the bread. She took the time to buy a fresh loaf and with the help of my BIL made a video showing the cross section of the bread.
I lightly sauteed the jalapenos in butter (a tip from Martha Stewart’s Jalapeno-Cheddar muffins recipe) and that gave the bread an amazing flavor. I used about 3 medium size jalapeños finely chopped in the recipe. I removed the ribs and seeds to make them less spicy. Increase or decrease the number of chilies based on your spice preference.
I used Tangzhong starter to get the soft and fluffy texture to the bread. Also I couldn’t stop myself from adding 1/2cup of wholewheat flour because making 100% white breads make me very guilty. I wish I could add more, but the soft texture of the Hokkaido would suffer — so had to stopped myself.
I was skeptical how this bread would turn out. I knew it was going to have a great texture, but I wasn’t sure if it would get super spicy. I was pleasantly surprised how delicious it turned out — it wasn’t too spicy at all, even my kids loved it. It had a really nice flavor and would be great for sandwiches or toast. My kids enjoyed it with some cream cheese.
For Tangzhong Starter:
- 2 tbsps bread flour Unbleached
- 3 tbsps water
- 3 tbsps milk Whole
For the Bread:
- 21/2 cups bread flour (I used 2cups bread flour and 1/2cup Whole wheat flour)
- 1 tbsp Instant Dry Yeast
- 1 tbsp sugar
- 1 tsp salt
- 2 tbsps milk Non fat Dry
- 1/2 cup milk Whole
- 1 tbsp egg replacer (whisked in 3tbsp water or 1 large )
- 6 tbsps unsalted butter , divided use
Make the Starter:
- In a small saucepan, combine the ingredients for Tangzhong starter. Whisk until no lumps remain.
- Place the pan over low heat and cook, whisking constantly, until thick and the whisk starts to leave lines on the bottom of the pan, about 3~5 minutes.
- Transfer the starter to a small bowl and let cool to room temperature.
- Melt 2tbsp butter in a saute pan, add the chopped jalapenos and pinch of salt; cook till slightly tender, about 3~4 minutes. Take off the heat and let cool to room temperature.
Make the Dough:
- Combine flour(s), sugar, salt, yeast, dry milk, melted 4tbsp butter, milk, egg replacer mixture, cooled jalapenos and the tangzhong starter in a large mixing bowl or the bowl of the stand mixer.
- Mix and knead till a smooth, elastic dough forms. Shape the dough into a ball and place it in a lightly greased bowl. Cover and set aside for 60~90 minutes, until puffy but not necessarily doubled in bulk.
- Gently deflate the dough and form into a loaf. Place it in a lightly greased 8.5"x4.5" loaf pan. Cover with a greased plastic wrap and set aside for 40~50 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 350F. Brush the loaf with milk (or egg wash) and bake for 28~32 minutes or until the top is golden brown and the digital thermometer inserted into the center reads 190F.
- Remove from the oven and transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely before slicing.
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