After successfully making soft and fluffy milk bread using the “tangzhong” method, I’ve been excited to try more recipes using the tangzhong method. I love how soft, fluffy and bouncy the bread is and how high it rises.
For those of you unfamiliar with the tangzhong method, a few years ago, a woman named Yvonne Chen wrote a book entitled 65 degrees Bread Doctor, which details her secret ingredient to keeping bread soft and bouncy. She uses a flour and water mixture, cooked to 65 degrees C, to make a flour paste called “tangzhong” which is added to the bread. What I loved about this idea is that it is natural and doesn’t use chemicals.
Christine’s recipes, which was where I found my first tangzhong bread recipe, has another tangzhong recipe, making bread rolls filled with custard coconut. I’ve had similar rolls from chinese bakeries. I normally don’t like filling in my breads. So instead, I decided to make the rolls and put some raisins in the bread rather than making a filling.
When I put the bread rolls together in the springform cake pan the raw dough rolls still had spaces between them. But when they baked, they all came together like they were supposed to.
The bread was really soft, just like the milk toast I made. It was soft, fluffy and I really like the addition of the plump raisins. You can easily pull apart each roll. I can’t wait to try out even more recipes. These tangzhong method breads have been devoured by my family.
Tips for Making the Dough
- Plan to make the tangzhong beforehand because it needs time to cool. The recipe (linked in the card below) makes more than you’ll need and the leftovers can be kept in the refridgerator for up to three days.
- One thing I did differently this time was using my stand mixer to knead the dough, and it made such a difference! The stand mixer was easily able to mix the dough and created a very elastic dough. You know the dough is ready when you can stretch it very thin without it breaking.
- This dough needs to proof and rest at different points in the process so be sure to account for that time when you make it.
How to Make the Dough Rolls
After you’ve made the dough and let it proof, you can make the rolls.
Step 1: Divide the dough into six equal parts and roll each into a ball. Let them rest for 15 minutes.
Step 2: Roll each ball into an oval shape. Sprinkle some raisins over the dough and lightly press them into it so they stick.
Step 3: Fold one end to the middle of the oval. Fold the other end so that it’s slightly overlapping the other end.
Step 4: Turn the dough over (fold-side down) and flatten it with a rolling pin.
Step 5: Turn the dough over again (fold-side up) and, starting at one end, roll the dough into itself like a jelly rolls
At this point, you can put the rolls in the baking pan and leave them to rise before baking them. I like to brush my rolls with an egg wash which gives them a shiny exterior.
- 2½ cups bread flour
- 3 tbsp +2 tsp sugar
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 2 tsp instant yeast
- 2 large eggs divided
- ½ cup skim milk
- 120 g tangzhong (see note)
- 3 tbsp unsalted butter cut into small pieces and softened at room temperature
- In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the flour, sugar, salt, and yeast. Make a well in the center of the mixture and place one of the eggs, milk, and tangzhong in it. Switch to the dough hook attachment and, on medium speed, knead the ingredients until a dough forms. Add the butter and continue kneading for 18 to 20 minutes, or until the dough is smooth and elastic. You should be able to stretch a piece of the dough very thin without it tearing.
- Coat the inside of a large bowl with oil. Form the dough into a ball shape and place it in the bowl and cover it with a wet towel for 40 minutes or until it has doubled in size.
- Deflate and divide the dough into six equal pieces and form each into a ball. Cover the dough balls with plastic wrap and let them rest for 15 minutes.
- Roll each dough ball into an oval shape. Sprinkle a handful of raisins across the dough and, using your rolling pin, press the raisins into the dough. Take one end of the dough and fold to meet the middle of the oval. Take the other end and fold to meet on top. Turn the dough over, so that the folds face down and roll and flatten dough with the rolling pin. Flip dough again, so folded side faces up. Roll the dough up from top to bottom. Knead into a ball shape. Repeat this step of rolling and wrapping fillings with the rest of the dough balls.
- Place the dough balls seam side down in a prepared 8-inch springform baking pan leaving the space in the center clear. Cover the pan with plastic wrap or a wet towel for 45 to 60 minutes, or until the rolls have doubled in size.
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Beat the other egg in a small bowl and brush it on top of the rolls. Bake the rolls for 30 to 35 minutes or until they are golden brown. Cool completely on a wire rack.
The nutrition information provided are only estimates based on an online nutritional calculator. I am not a certified nutritionist. Please consult a professional nutritionist or doctor for accurate information and any dietary restrictions and concerns you may have.