Brioche Basics

by0| PUBLISHED Feb 12, 2008 10:00 AM
Brioche Basics

Golden on the outside, with a feathery, rich-tasting interior, the brioche is a perfect showcase for butter. This particular type of brioche, known as brioche a tete, refers to the confection's shape: a large sphere topped with a smaller one (the "head"); here's how to shape them.
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1. Using the edge of a dough scraper, divide the brioche dough into two sections.
2. Score divided halves of dough into six smaller sections.
3. Using the scraper and score marks as a guide, divide the dough into 12 equal pieces.
4. Dust your hands with flour and gently roll the dough into balls.
5. To shape a brioche a tete, place your hand in a "karate chop" position over a dough round.
6. Roll the side of your hand back and forth over the dough, taking care not to press all the way through, until it has formed a small and larger ball.
7. Stop rolling when the dough resembles a bowling pin.
8. Grasp the dough by the small ball, or "head", and place it in a well-oiled brioche mold.
9. Using your fingertips, indent the lower round and center the small ball on top.
10. Repeat with remaining dough and molds.
11. Place the molds on a sheet pan. Brush the top of each brioche with egg wash and bake until deep golden brown, 25–30 minutes.