Friday, January 9, 2015

No-Knead Almond Brioche Bostock

Makes one loaf
Recipe from Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day by Jeff Hertzberg, M.D. and Zoe Francois
Husband-Tested in Alice’s Kitchen

Oh, what a breakfast you will have when serving this lovely pastry to your guests!  This is absolutely delicious!!!  Make a batch of No-Knead Brioche dough (one batch of dough will make up to four loaves) and freeze it for when you want to make this special treat.  Thaw the dough in the fridge overnight and then follow these directions.

4 Tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature plus more for prepping the pan
½ cup almond paste
¼ cup unbleached all-purpose flour
1 large egg
¼ teaspoon almond extract
¼ teaspoon orange-flower water (optional)
¼ cup sugar plus more for prepping the pan
Zest from half an orange
½ cup sliced almonds

Generously butter an 8-inch round cake pan.  Sprinkle the pan with a dusting of granulated sugar.  Set aside.  (You can do this a day in advance and store it in the fridge until ready to use.)
Cream together the butter, almond paste, flour, egg, orange-flower water (if using) and almond extract in a food processor until very smooth and well combined.  Set aside.
Dust the surface of the refrigerated No-Knead Brioche Dough with a bit of flour.  Quickly shape it into a ball by stretching the surface of the dough around to the bottom on all four sides, rotating the ball a quarter-turn as you go.
With a rolling pin, roll out the ball into a ¼ inch thick rectangle.  As you roll out the dough, use enough flour to prevent it from sticking to the work surface, but not so much as to make the dough dry.
Spread the almond cream evenly over the rectangle, leaving a 1-inch border all around. (I use an offset spatula for this task.) Roll up the dough, jellyroll style, starting at the long end, and being sure to seal the bare edges.  The dough will be soft, so chill the log for about 15 minutes in the freezer before cutting it.
Cut the chilled dough into 8 equal pieces.  Place them evenly in the prepared cake pan so that the swirled cut edge is facing upward.  Allow the dough to rest for 1 hour.
Twenty minutes before baking time, preheat the oven to 350 F.
Just before baking, mix together sugar, orange zest, and almonds and sprinkle over the brioche.  (I use sparkly sugar for this, but regular granulate sugar works well too.) Bake until golden brown and well set in the center, about 40 minutes or so.

Run a knife around the inside of the pan to release the brioche while it is still hot.  Invert it onto a serving dish.  If you let it set too long, it will stick to the pan and be difficult to run out.  Enjoy this warm!

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