Soft and buttery, this bread takes some TLC to prepare, but the final results are well worth it. Perfect when toasted and spread with jam for breakfast, or sliced and made even more decadent when used for making French toast.
Makes 1 loaf (about 8 servings)
1¼ teaspoons active dry yeast
1 teaspoon plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar, divided
2 tablespoons warm whole milk (105–110°F)
1 1⁄3 cups bread flour
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
½ teaspoon kosher salt
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold and cubed (store in refrigerator until ready to use)
egg wash (1 large egg and 1 tablespoon water whisked together)
Nutritional information per serving:
Calories 185 (47% from fat) • carb. 19g • pro. 5g
• fat 10g • sat. fat 6g • chol. 69mg • sod. 167mg
• calc. 11mg • fiber 1g
1. In a small bowl, dissolve the yeast and teaspoon of sugar in the warm milk. Let stand 5 to 10 minutes, or until mixture is foamy.
2. Put the flour and the remaining 2 tablespoons of sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Mix to combine. Once yeast has proofed, add mixture to the flour/sugar. Mix on a medium-low speed until completely combined, and then very gradually add the eggs, not adding more until the previous bit has been absorbed by the flour mixture. Continue to mix until dough is completely homogenous without any lumps. You may need to raise the speed to a medium/medium-high at this point. The dough will be very sticky and glue-like. Allow this to mix for about 10 minutes to allow gluten to develop well. Stop the mixer to scrape down the sides of the bowl and the paddle as needed to be sure that the dough is well-mixed and smooth.
3. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and the paddle, and then replace the paddle with the dough hook. Start mixing on a low/medium-low speed and add the salt. Gradually add the cold butter, cube by cube, not adding more butter until the preceding is fully incorporated. Increase speed to medium and continue kneading until all the butter has been added. Add additional flour, 1 teaspoon at a time, if dough is getting too sticky. The kneading process should take about 15 to 20 minutes - do not rush it! Dough is done when it is smooth and elastic, and when pulled should not break apart easily.
4. Form dough into a ball and put in a clean mixing bowl, cover with plastic and allow to rest in the refrigerator for 3 ½ hours. After chilling, let rest at room temperature for an additional 30 minutes.
5. Generously butter a 9-inch loaf pan. Gently shape dough into a loaf and put it in the pan. With the rack in the lower rack position, put pan in oven. Set to Steam at 100°F for 25 minutes to proof. Remove from oven and lightly brush with egg wash. Return to oven and then set to Bread at 350°F for 30 minutes to bake. Bread should be shiny and well browned at the end of the baking cycle, and the internal temperature should read 190°F.
6. Remove bread from the pan and allow to fully cool on a rack before serving.