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JULIA: Once upon a time there were three brioche.
There was a little tiny baby brioche, and there was the mother brioche, (deeper voice): and there was a great big father brioche.
And one day, they were all ready to go into the oven.
We'’’re doing the story of "Goldilocks and the Three Brioche" today on The French Chef.
And I'’’m Goldilocks.
♪ ♪ Welcome to The French Chef.
I'’’m Julia Child.
This is a little baby brioche.
And what is a little baby brioche made out of?
Webster'’’s Dictionary says it is a fancy light yeast dough rich with eggs and butter.
Mr. Webster must certainly have known the real thing because that'’’s just what it is.
You open it up and it'’’s this lovely, tender, buttery consistency and it'’’s just about the best thing to eat you can imagine.
And it'’’s made out of a yeast dough, as Webster said.
And all yeast doughs are alike in that they all have flour and yeast in them and they all have to rise.
And if you make one type of yeast dough, you have a good introduction as to how to make many other types.
The brioche is a special type because it has a very large quantity of butter and lots of eggs in it.
So we'’’re gonna start out making it and I'’’m gonna get out the eggs.
Ideally, these should be eggs at room temperature, but if you'’’ve forgotten to do them at room temperature, you can warm them in a little bit of tepid water.
And that'’’s what I'’’m gonna do now, because the eggs have to go in with the yeast, and... if the...
The yeast doesn'’’t like to have cold eggs thrown at it.
It makes it balky and it won'’’t rise, so just put the eggs in tepid water and they'’’ll come up to room temperature.
And as for the yeast, I like, really best of all, this packaged dry active yeast.
And be sure that you look on the package just make sure that the yeast has not... that it'’’s still good.
It lasts about a year on the shelf.
So we want one package of yeast.
And then, we want to dissolve that in three tablespoons of hot water.
This water should not be more than 110 degrees and feel it with your finger.
And then we add three tablespoons of this hot water.
And then we have to give the yeast something to feed on so it will grow.
And we'’’ll add a half tablespoon of sugar and a quarter teaspoon of salt, because we want to let the yeast prove itself, which means that it proves that it'’’s active, and also it'’’s thoroughly dissolved, and then is ready to work as soon as it gets into its dough mixture.
So we'’’ll just set it aside; this takes five or six minutes.
And then we want to have our butter, which is at exactly the right consistency, going into the dough.
And we want one and a half sticks of butter.
And that'’’s six ounces.
And you have to soften it up.
We'’’ve done this a lot of times before.
So start softening it by beating it a little bit.
And then you want to gather it in your hand.
You'’’ll see later on why it'’’s very important... that the butter be exactly the right consistency.
And you can use either unsalted or salted butter, it doesn'’’t make any difference.
If you use unsalted butter, you'’’d add another quarter teaspoon of salt later on, when you add your flour.
Now I'’’m softening it again, by this hand smear, using the palm of the hand.
Get used to this trick '’’cause we'’’ll be using it quite a bit today.
This is sort of the smear technique of softening butter.
I'’’m doing this on a marble.
I like a marble because it'’’s so easy to clean off and it usually stays nice and cool.
Now, this butter is to be, um... what you would say, cold and malleable.
And now, when you have your butter softened, you'’’re ready to start in on your dough.
So we put the butter back in the dish.
And then we'’’re gonna start in on the dough.
And we'’’re first gonna have our three eggs, which are at room temperature.
Soon as I get my towel on here.
I'’’m taking them out of their warm water and they'’’re just about at room temperature now.
And be sure that you use graded large eggs, '’’cause that'’’s, well, how this recipe works.
There you are.
And they get beaten up, just sort of as though you were making scrambled eggs.
Just enough to mix them.
And then we'’’re going to have one-half tablespoon of sugar.
You usually have to have a little bit of sugar in a yeast dough, because that, again, gives the yeast something to feed on.
Then we want three-quarters of a teaspoon of salt.
And that'’’s just about three-quarters.
And then we want to have two cups of all-purpose flour.
And you can use either the regular flour or that instant granular flour that you don'’’t have to sift.
In any case, the flour does not need sifting.
And measure it exactly this way.
Put the cup into your bag or your can, and then scrape it off level with the flat edge of a knife.
And that'’’s about four and a half ounces... for each cup.
So there you are.
And now we'’’ll take a look at our yeast and see how that'’’s doing.
You have to be sure, because this is granular yeast, that it has dissolved and also, it rises up to the top of the liquid, as you can see, it'’’s sort of a soft mass on top there.
So when that has, um... dissolved and melted, that goes into your bowl with the flour.
And then start mixing it up with a rubber spatula, and then we'’’re gonna begin kneading it.
Some people like to mix the whole thing on their pastry board or marble, but I think this is a little easier way of starting it out.
As you'’’re gonna see, this is gonna be a really sticky dough.
If you thought that baba dough, which is very much like-- made very much like this-- was sticky, you wait, you haven'’’t seen anything quite as sticky as this.
And now, in this first part, try and keep one hand clean.
So I shall try and keep my left hand clean.
And then start kneading with your right hand.
And that'’’s just gathering everything into a mass.
And it sticks very much to your hand.
It'’’s supposed to be a quite soft, sticky dough at first.
And if you, at this point, if you'’’ve gathered it together and it'’’s fairly stiff, knead in a teaspoon or two of milk.
You see, that'’’s very sticky.
And we do this business, as soon as it'’’s gathered into a mass, of throwing it down onto the... onto the table.
And working it back and forth.
And you want to be just as rough and fast and tough as you can.
Gonna take about two or three minutes until this is kneaded so that it'’’s elastic and doesn'’’t stick so much to my hand.
And the object of kneading is to develop the gluten in the flour.
Because all-purpose flour, or bread flour, which you could also use, has a lot of gluten, and that'’’s this rubbery quality that has to be activated so that when the dough rises... it will keep its rise.
If you'’’re using, say, a pastry flour, which doesn'’’t have very much gluten in it, you won'’’t have a good risen dough.
Now, see, I'’’m taking my heel again and I'’’m pushing it back and forth, and that, you see now, is beginning to get elasticity.
And it'’’s also beginning to be a little less sticky.
It'’’s gonna get further kneading when the butter goes in, so that'’’s about good enough.
You see, you can lift it up, and it has, what the French call du corps, or body.
And now we start kneading in the butter.
So you take it by sort of a handful, about two tablespoonsful, and being working it into the dough.
This is where the special difference of brioche dough is.
This is where you really see the difference, because this is the way you get the butter in.
And your object in this is to knead it in, so that you have an absolutely smooth dough and you can'’’t feel any lumps or ropes in it.
At this point, I'’’m gonna use two hands.
This is a real, sort of, like a real mud pie business.
But if you tried to knead all the butter in at once, you just wouldn'’’t get anywhere at all.
So you just push it back and forth.
And this, to get it in completely, will take about five minutes.
I probably won'’’t do all of it.
But while I'’’m kneading here, I'’’ll give you those ingredients again, in case you didn'’’t get them written down.
That is one package of dry active yeast dissolved in three tablespoons of hot water.
And one-quarter teaspoon of salt and one-half tablespoon of sugar.
And you have three eggs, one-half tablespoon of sugar, three-fourth teaspoons of salt and two cups of all-purpose flour.
And one and a half sticks of butter.
So that'’’s all there is to it.
There, and see, at this point, do again this palm of the hand technique, pushing it out.
And this gets the butter in, and if you happen to be doing this on a very hot day, and your butter-- after you'’’ve gotten it quite a bit more into the, into the dough, and it begins to turn oily, simply put the whole business in the refrigerator, for about ten or 20 minutes until the butter is hardened and then continue kneading.
And you want to knead this until it is elastic again and until it easily peels off your hands.
And that'’’s about five minutes of vigorous work.
And use this palm of your hand always, '’’cause it'’’s less-- I mean the heel of your hand, because it'’’s less hot than the palm of your hand and you don'’’t want to get this butter any warmer than necessary.
You can always see, in these things, why bakers are usually great big people.
'’’Cause it'’’s a lot of vigorous work, which is always a good way to get your exercise.
I'’’m not gonna knead this completely, '’’cause you don'’’t want to see me do this for five minutes.
But remember, it'’’s supposed to be kneaded until it practically doesn'’’t stick to your hands.
And then, you put it in a bowl.
Now I'’’m going to wash off my hands.
But if you'’’ve kneaded it the full amount, you won'’’t have to wash so vigorously.
But this is a good example of why they have that French expression of "mettre la main à la pâte," which means, "get your hands right into the pastry."
Because then, when you do, you know how it'’’s supposed to feel.
And now this dough has to rise.
And you have one difference between bread dough and brioche dough, in that the bread dough doesn'’’t have this enormous quantity of butter in it.
And the bread dough you can let rise in a warm place.
But with this, with all of this butter, and if it'’’s a very hot day, you have to be very careful.
So after you'’’ve kneaded it, put it in the bowl.
You want to have, if possible, two risings.
So put it in a plastic bag and let it sit at room temperature until it'’’s started to rise up.
This has risen up just about double.
It can rise up a little less than that.
And after it'’’s risen, punch it down, which means take your hands and deflate it.
You see, that'’’s really unpuffing itself, and then give it a good bit of a kneading to really push it down again.
Then put it back in the bowl, and the object of giving it the two rises, if you can, is that the brioche is supposed to be such a lovely, light thing, and two risings make it rise higher and give it a lighter texture.
And then, you'’’ve kneaded it down.
Then sprinkle it with flour and put a piece of wax paper over it.
And then it goes into the refrigerator.
And the reason it goes into the refrigerator is '’’cause we'’’re going to form it into brioche, and unless it'’’s chilled, you'’’re not gonna be able to form it.
So just cover it loosely with paper.
And then you can, if you want to let it rise overnight, it gets its second rising in the refrigerator now for about four or five hours.
But if you want to do it just before you go to bed, you can put it in the refrigerator just like this, and then put a weight on it.
A plate and a weight.
I'’’ve got an old weight here that I use for everything.
Just weight it down, and that prevents it from overrising because it must not overrise, because if it rises more than double then you get a sort of an acid taste, or you might even overwork your yeast so that it won'’’t rise anymore.
So remember that.
Now we have our second rising, and it goes into the refrigerator until it is again doubled in volume.
And it will rise while in the refrigerator, it'’’s just a much slower rise.
And that'’’s what you want, a slow rise, so that the butter has hardened and then you'’’ll be able to work it.
So this goes now into the refrigerator, and I'’’ll take out my ready dough, which is chilled.
And I have here a triple mix.
If you make a triple mix like this, you just need two packages of yeast for tripling the recipe, because the more you make, the more quickly the yeast rises.
So I'’’ve got an awful lot here, '’’cause we'’’re going to make a great many brioche.
I mean, not a great many, but quite a few.
And we'’’re going to make, first, a little baby brioche.
And this, you don'’’t have to have these fluted tins at all, you can perfectly well use a muffin tin or you can use one of these ovenware glass things.
But I think the fluted one is rather pretty.
And so, what we'’’re going to do is to make the brioche in two parts.
You see, that has a head there, and then it has the body there.
And this is called "la brioche à tête," or "the brioche with a head on it."
And so, you take out a piece of your cold dough, and you see that'’’s nice and cold.
If it weren'’’t cold, you couldn'’’t form it.
And this tin is buttered.
I'’’ve already buttered them all.
And we want a little ball in the bottom.
And that'’’s even probably a little bit too much.
Just roll it around in your hands and then place it in the bottom.
And then for the top, we'’’re gonna get some flour over here.
You take your little finger for a little one, and just push a little hole in it.
And then you make the top of it by having a small ball, and rolling that around, and then rolling the point, so that you have a pear shape like that.
And then-- I'’’ve got to push that hole and then just stick it in.
And this mold should just be filled by half.
And then if you want to make a larger fluted mold like this, you do it exactly the same way.
And you can omit the head, if you want.
There, just put that in, and you don'’’t have to put any head on at all.
So we'’’ll make one with a head and one without a head.
And you don'’’t have to even it off, '’’cause it will rise, and even itself off.
And then for a big brioche, you can form it in one of these... just an ovenware casserole like this.
Or if you don'’’t have the right size, you want to have straight sides that slightly slope outward.
You can use just an ordinary saucepan.
Or if you want a round sized one and you have an ovenproof bowl like this, you can bake it in that.
But put in a little pad of aluminum foil.
And the bowl and the foil have been buttered.
So now we make a big ball to go in that.
I love the smell of yeast dough.
I really would just as soon eat it raw as cooked, but I don'’’t know, it'’’s so lovely cooked, as you'’’ll see when you make them and eat them yourself.
And roll your ball around there, and then stick it in.
See, you have to have that little piece of aluminum foil in a round-bottomed bowl, otherwise, the... the brioche wouldn'’’t sit up when it was done.
Then you make another hole with your finger, and then make another round ball for the top.
And just roll it with your finger so you can make that neck that'’’s going to go down in the hole.
And make the hole a little bigger and stick the ball right in.
And now we'’’re going to make a crown or couronne and this one you could form in a ring mold if you wanted to, but I think I'’’m going to do it in the free-form way because it'’’s sort of more fun to do.
And this is to go on a wet baking sheet, so I'’’ll just run some cold water over that.
And the reason you want it on a wet baking sheet is that the damp baking sheet will hold the brioche in place and make it rise a little higher.
Now for this, I have a double mix.
For the baby brioche, this two cups of flour will probably make 14 or 16 or nine muffin tin ones.
And this two-cup mix would also make a brioche in a five-inch diameter bowl.
And for this crown, I have a double mix here.
And this, you start out by flouring it lightly, and then putting your thumbs in and just turning it around.
This is very much as though you were doing pottery.
And then flour your hands lightly and keep pushing it around.
This is to be about as big as a large dinner plate.
And you find also that if it sort of springs back, just let it rest a little more.
That'’’s your old friend, the gluten, which is acting up and being rubbery.
And try and make this just as even as you can.
And this is a very soft dough, rich in butter.
There are other types of brioche.
There'’’s one called just the ordinary brioche, which has much less butter in it.
But this is called the brioche fin and you'’’ll find that with this ring that probably the inside will close.
It wouldn'’’t close if you had more flour in it, but then also you would not have nearly as nice a brioche.
And so, these brioche now have to rise.
And they have to rise for about an hour or maybe less until they'’’ve almost doubled.
And I'’’ll show you what they should look like when they have risen.
Now, see, there'’’s our little, tiny, baby brioche.
And here'’’s our big brioche here, which has risen up practically to fill the bowl.
See how much it must rise.
And here'’’s our couronne, or crown brioche.
And now... these risen brioche are ready to go into the oven, but first they all have to have an egg glaze.
And the rising takes... well, you just have to wait until it'’’s soft and feels soft and it has risen.
And we have our egg glaze, which is just one egg beaten in one cup-- I mean, in one teaspoon of water in a cup.
And then you just spread it on with a pastry brush.
And with this, be sure that you don'’’t get the glaze between the head and the body of the brioche... ...or at least try not to.
And now we have our big, crown brioche.
And the egg glaze is very important because... ...because it gives a lovely, brown quality and it'’’s much better than any other kind, so don'’’t try to save on eggs.
And now, we have to do a little bit of clipping.
You see, the reason that we don'’’t want the glaze to come between the head and the body is because we don'’’t want the egg to stick the body.
And this one'’’s falling over a little bit, so I'’’m going to push the head together.
And this clipping is what they say in France, it'’’s faire sortir la tête, or at least it makes the head stick out a little bit more before it goes into the oven.
And then we have our crown brioche, which we again clip.
The clipping is going to rise a little bit more as it goes into the oven-- I mean, as it bakes.
And the clipping just helps it rise.
So those are now all ready to go into the oven.
And I'’’m going to show you how they look when they come out of the oven.
Now... here'’’s our little baby brioche.
And here'’’s our great big brioche.
And here is our mother brioche, our couronne.
And for these, the, um... they all go into a 475-degree oven.
And the little baby brioche bakes for about 15 minutes until it'’’s nice and brown like this.
And the big brioche here goes into a 475-degree oven and then you turn it down to 350 for about 20 or 30 minutes.
So it takes almost an hour in all, and you can tell when it'’’s done by sticking a needle or straw into the side and when it comes out clean, it'’’s done.
And the couronne bakes for 15 or 20 minutes in a 475-degree oven.
And it'’’s done also when you prick it.
And now, we'’’re gonna see our brioche in a more formal setting.
And here we have our little baby brioche which are delicious for breakfast or tea or snacks.
And they should be lovely and fresh and soft.
And here'’’s our big brioche here and this one you cut just as though you were cutting a cake.
And this, you would... they really should be eaten the day they'’’re baked to get all that lovely, sort of moist, soft quality.
But if you have a day-old brioche, you can slice it and then toast the slices and they are perfectly delicious.
And then, we have our big couronne brioche and I'’’m gonna cut it so you can see how it looks.
And these, see, they'’’re so nice and buttery, these brioche, that you don'’’t really need to have any butter with them at all.
You can just serve them with jam.
And there you are and that has the most lovely texture that you can imagine.
Now, to serve another one.
And what is nice about the brioche, too, you can-- after you'’’ve baked them, you can let them cool, and then freeze them, and then take them from the freezer and put them on a plate and reheat them.
And so, the end of this story of "Goldilocks and the Three Brioche" is that the brioche smelled so good and tasted so good that Goldilocks ate them all up all by herself and lived happily forever after.
That'’’s all for today on The French Chef.
This is Julia Child.
Captioned by Media Access Group at WGBH access.wgbh.org ♪ ♪ ANNOUNCER: Julia Child is coauthor of the book Mastering the Art of French Cooking.
ANNOUNCER: The French Chef is made possible by a grant from The Polaroid Corporation.