I am especially excited about this recipe as I have been hanging onto it since the whole internet crisis and I could not wait to share this with you. This is a good one :)!
The other day I had the usual play date day with my friends at my house since I was still on house arrest until I cleared by the doctor, which meant I had to be the good hostess/housewife and of course was an excellent excuse to scratch an itching I had been having for a decadent dessert-like recipe. So what better than brioche with a peach and hazelnut sauce and a drizzle of icing!
This recipe required some digging and some serious studying, which was fun, but challenging. I looked at all kinds of vegan brioche versions, which I have to say, there are not so many out there probably because of the fact that it is clearly a daunting undertaking and a daring promise to live up to. I was certainly not brave enough to go it alone and in the end decided to base my recipe off of an amazing bread cookbook (The Bread Baker’s Apprentice) that I have (it really is amazing!) and just veganize it. I followed their third version (poor man’s brioche) for brioche and stayed true to their amounts and directions. The three versions were based on the proportion of egg and butter to flour. I chose the one with less butter as I thought it would be the safest bet to veganize.
I warn you now, this is time consuming and if you decide to make it, that is what you will be doing all day. So if your friends call you up for a coffee, they are just going to have to come on over, you are not going out missy, no no you have now made the noble and brave commitment to make brioche, but not just any brioche . . . vegan brioche with vanilla peach and hazelnut sauce with icing! It is not an easy or quick recipe, but you can be glad and feel proud of yourself that you took on the challenge! So if it doesn’t turn out, you did something that most people would not even attempt to do, they would just go out and buy it, so that gives you bragging rights no doubt. And if it does turn out, then you really have bragging rights and even more reason to call those friends over for coffee at your house to show off your awesome baking skills. But regardless of any difficulties this recipe may present, I am sure that it will turn out great and you will knock it out like a rock star ;)!
Alright, so let’s get started on this braided bonanza of a bread!
½ cup bread flour
2 tsp instant yeast
½ cup non-dairy milk, lukewarm (90-100 degrees)
3 ¼ cups bread flour
2 Tbs sugar
1 ¼ tsp salt
100 gr vegan butter, at room temperature
Egg substitute: 3 Tbs flax meal + 9 Tbs warm water
60 grams plain soy yogurt
For the sponge: mix the flour and yeast together. Stir in the milk and mix with a dough hook if using an electric mixer until flour is hydrated. Cover with plastic wrap and leave to ferment for 30 t 45 minutes.
For the dough: Make the egg substitute and mix in the yogurt, set to the side to gel for about 10 minutes. In the meantime mix the flour, sugar and salt together. Once the flax mixture has a gel-like consistency add it in to the mixer then spoon in the flour mixture a little at a time, mixing with a dough hook until all the ingredients are hydrated and evenly distributed. Let this rest for 5 mintues. Then work in the butter a little bit at a time until it is all well distributed.
Roll the dough out onto the counter and knead for 10 minutes (I seriously timed it too, I had to be faithful to the recipe!). Add in small amounts of flour, not too much, and by the time you are done kneading it should be smooth, soft and not too sticky.
Transfer the dough to an oiled bowl. Brush the top of the dough with oil and cover with plastic wrap. Leave to ferment for about 90 minutes, or until it is double in size.
Shape the dough however you prefer, in the traditional way, a loaf, rolls, or braided. If you choose to braid it, divide it into 3 equal parts (weigh it if you want to be sure, I did). Roll each part out into a snake-like shape then join the 3 together at the top and start braiding.
Cover and leave to proof for about 1 hour.
Stuff all the nooks and crannies with the Peach sauce and now you are finally ready to bake. The instructions in my book said to bake at 400, but I found that that was too hot and I lowered it to about 350 and covered it as well since it was browning too fast on top. At this temp, and in my awesomely reliable oven, I left it in for about 45 minutes. To check if it is done the top should be golden brown and if you put a toothpick or knife in it, it shouldn’t feel doughy, you can even lift up a bit on one of the braids and see.
Add everything to a frying pan along with the vanilla pod itself. Leave to simmer for a few minutes, at least until the sugar is well dissolved, 10 -15 minutes would be even better to get the vanilla flavor well infused.
Note: I have not included a recipe for icing as I just used a plain old powdered sugar one, which you can find anywhere online, it’s just a cup of powdered sugar and 1-2 tablespoons milk or water.
Reflections and Redresses
This would be great as a loaf to slice and use for sandwiches or french toast. I also can’t wait to try it again and rework it into a sort of cinnamon roll or bun with warm spices and nuts. Also with pumpkin mixed in to replace some of the wet ingredients would be a fantastic fall interpretation. Keep your eyes peeled for some new versions of this from me . . . not anytime soon though as it is sooo time consuming! What ideas do you have? How would you rework it?
Your experience of yourself is in direct relation to your thoughts about yourself.
I love ending with quotes that I find inspiring, whether they are related to cooking, blogging, or anything, they are reflections on life that lift me up and fill me with hope, love and further self-awareness. I hope they offer a ray of light to your day and maybe spark something in you too. What are some of your favorite inspiring quotes?