No deep frying necessary, perfect for French Toast…
When my husband (…and long suffering Guinea Pig) hears pots and pans bashing around in the kitchen or gets a whiff of something cooking he’ll suddenly appear behind me, peering over my shoulder with a look of terrified curiosity as he asks, “Oh God, what are you making now..?” He hasn’t trusted me in the kitchen since the Slow Cooker Chilli Chocolate Chicken incident ten years ago – the memory of which still has us crying tears of laughter (…although at the time the tears had a lot more to do with the 200g of bird eye chilli peppers I chucked in – seeds and all). Nowadays when I tell him what I’m up to he’s more likely to hum and ask when it’s going to be ready than reel in horror, but I still get the odd raised eyebrow and the occasional “YOU’RE FILTH” when I come at him with something excessively gluttonous (like Cream Egg-filled Doughnuts for example…).
To be honest, those are the recipes I get really excited about because they either turn out to be absolutely banging or disastrously bonkers (but a blast to mess around with either way) – and as soon as I decided that I fancied creating a Jam Doughnut-flavoured loaf of bread that would be just perfect for French Toast, I knew it was going to be one of those make it or break it days in the kitchen.
Thankfully, it was a make it day; the loaf came out perfectly and – even better – made my house smell of jam doughnuts. The enriched dough turned out a soft, pillowy loaf (a lot like brioche, but not quite as buttery) with that well-loved sugary, cinnamon seaside doughnut flavour, marbled with slightly sour and sticky raspberry jam. Delicious either warm from the oven with a bit of butter, or toasted for a bit of crunch – it was even better a few days later when it was slightly on the stale side and made some pretty epic French Toast. Filthy, but fabulous. 😉
Jam Doughnut Brioche Loaf
- 150ml warm milk
- 2 tsp dried active yeast
- 4 tbsp caster sugar
- 2 beaten eggs
- 50g cooled melted butter
- pinch of salt
- 300g plain flour
- 2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 340g seedless raspberry jam
- In a small bowl, stir together the warm milk, caster sugar and yeast – leaving it for ten minutes for the yeast to activate (you’ll know it’s worked if you get either a foamy surface or can see tiny, pinprick bubbles forming – if not, your milk was either too hot or too cold and you’ll need to start again).
- Pour your beaten eggs and cool, melted butter into a large bowl – then add the yeast mixture. Sift in the flour, salt and ground cinnamon, then stir to create a sticky, wet dough.
- If you’ve got a bread maker, go ahead and use your dough setting to take the hard work of kneading out – if not, pour the dough onto a floured surface and knead for ten minutes until soft and pliable (it’ll be a sticky, messy affair from start to finish – but persevere and you’ll be rewarded in the end! 🙂 ). Pop the kneaded dough into a lightly oiled bowl, cover with clingfilm and then leave to prove somewhere warm for an hour.
- Once the dough has proved, knock it back and then roll it out into about a 2cm thick rectangle. Spread the surface generously with raspberry jam, then tightly roll it along the long edge (like a Swiss Roll).
- Line a 1lb loaf tin with baking paper, then roughly twist your roll of dough and pop it in the tin (tucking the ends underneath – bit like a Babka). Leave to prove somewhere warm for another hour.
- Glaze the surface of the loaf with a little milk (or a beaten egg for a glossy, golden finish), then bake for 35 minutes at 180°C.
- Serve fresh and warm from the oven with butter, or for breakfast as French Toast. 🙂 (Check out my favourite French Toast Recipes here)
Have a lovely week!