Brioche Dough in the Bread Machine
This comes out perfectly every time. It requires time in the refrigerator to produce the classic flavor. I make a huge braid but it can be worked into two braided loaves or just 2 loaves, or into classic top knot brioche buns.
Nancy's Bread Machine Brioche Dough
Make sure everything is at room temperature (except heated milk). Put ingredients in bread machine in order and set to Whole Wheat and Dough (I use a Zojirushi Virtuoso 2#).
1/3 C milk (heat in micro to 80F to105F)
3 extra large eggs (or 5 large)
4T butter of total 12T (never use margarine -it just won't work)
½ t salt
¼ C sugar + 1 T
1 ¾ C all-purpose flour
1 ½ C bread flour
2 ¼ t active dry yeast (1 pkg)
Set to Regular Dough (not Quick), and Whole Wheat if your machine has that longer kneading setting. Start machine. After 5 minutes or so add 2 T butter, let mix some more and add 2T more, repeat until all 12T used.
When machine beeps halfway there will have been 8T added and then add the last 4T sometime before the end of kneading. If you miss the window add the rest of the butter and put machine back on Quick Dough and let it work for about 20 minutes more. Do add all the butter, don’t skimp. At end of cycle, turn off and let dough rest in machine for 5 minutes to cool a bit.
Put in a PAM sprayed large bowl, cover with PAM sprayed plastic wrap. Refrigerate 12-24 hours to develop more flavor. 18 hours is what I use because I time it to be ready for dinner the next day.
Roll out 3 or 4 portions of dough to make each a very long baton. Pinch one end together, tuck under and make a braid/plait diagonally directly on parchment covered 1/2 sheet pan, pinch the other end and tuck. Cover with towel and let rise @40-60 minutes to almost doubled. (Option: cut dough In half and make two loaves or into PAM sprayed muffin tins for classic brioche top knots.)
Pre-heat oven to 375F. Brush with beaten egg white, sprinkle with kosher salt and seed mix. Bake until internal temp is 190F - 200F @ 25 to 45 minutes. Halfway through you may want to brush more egg wash in the opened crevices and add more seeds there (I love seeded bread). Dump to rack to cool, do not try to cut the bread while hot, but slightly warm is really nice.
Seed Mix: Toasted or not - Poppy, Sesame, Flax, Caraway, Sunflower, or all Poppy or Sesame, and always a sprinkle of kosher salt. Options: nigella, chia, pumpkin, ground nuts (walnut, almond), or even soaked/drained dried cranberries or tart cherries with a tiny sprinkle of cinnamon sugar on top.