I am a crusty bread lover and I always bake good hearty rustic bread for daily consumption. But when it comes to occasional indulging, I like to go all in and make brioche. If you haven’t made my sourdough brioche yet, then book mark that recipe. It is to die for! If you want a vegan recipe, no problem my vegan sourdough pumpkin brioche is equally delicious and you wouldn’t believe it hasn’t got any dairy or eggs.
Our favorite way to use brioche is of course to make French toasts. Any leftovers will be turned into Bostock. If you haven’t tried Bostock, it is an absolute must. The brioche is topped with a layer of fluffy almond cream(frangipane) and almond flakes and baked to perfection. That, was my inspiration in creating this recipe.
I thought, why bother making the brioche first when you can turn the dough into (kind of) Bostock straight away! This is similar to brioche custard tarts but instead of a baked custard center this will have a crispy and chewy frangipane.
The brioche dough I use here, has got less eggs and butter than a traditional brioche. So the dough is rich and soft yet very manageable. It will hold it’s shape nicely while proofing. If you want to bake this vegan, check the vegan sourdough pumpkin brioche to see how you can substitute the eggs and butter.
A simple mixture of butter sugar eggs and almond meal. To get the best texture, make sure you beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy before adding the egg. Once the egg is added, beat until the mixture is fluffy again. Then fold the sifted almond flour/meal without loosing the light airy texture. Use a hand beater for this purpose. If using a hand whisk, make sure to beat thoroughly.
Fruit to use
Use any seasonal fleshy fruit. I found some juicy delicious strawberries and they were perfect. You can use;
Avoid using watery fruit like melons, kiwis etc.
Make the sweet stiff starter about 10-12 hours prior to mixing the dough. I usually make this around 10 pm the night before and use it around 7-8 am in the morning.
Add all the ingredients except butter and mix until a dough is developed.
The dough should have some gluten development. Check the picture. Now rest this dough for 15 minutes.
Add butter a tablespoon at a time and mix/knead using the dough hook. Use medium-low speed.
Spread the butter on the dough like shown in the picture so it will better incorporate. Once the butter is cleared, add another tablespoon.
The dough will look messy, greasy and sticky like this but that’s okay keep adding and mixing butter.
Once all the butter is added, scrape the ball and mix for a minute or two. The dough will be considerably, soft and sticky at this stage.
Bring the soft, sticky dough on to a surface (table/non-stick counter top)
Leave to rest for about 10-15 minutes
Using wet/greased hands slap and fold the dough until it becomes fairly smooth, silky and elastic.
After the slap and folds, the dough will look smooth. It will be less sticky and feel elastic.
Place this dough in a greased bowl, cover and leave in a slightly warm(25-27°C) place until doubled (almost double in size)
about 5-6 hours
Once the dough has doubled you have two options:
– Punch down, cover and refrigerate over night (several hours) to retard
– Punch down, cover and refrigerate for 2 hours and move on to baking on the same day
Punch down the dough, cover and refrigerate to retard. I will leave this over night to slow proof as usual. But feel free to bake on the same day if you want.
Remove the dough from the fridge and let it soften up a bit. Dough should still be cold but soft.
Place the dough on a floured surface and start rolling out
Roll out to a rectangle of roughly 20″ by 25″. Even if it is a square, it doesn’t matter. This size perfectly match the Half-sheet tray I have.
Dough thickness should be around 1/2 cm. A little over is fine. Don’t roll out too thin, it will be difficult to handle and the tart won’t have enough body to it.
Let the dough rest for 5-10 minutes and cut into 12 squares. Arrange squares on a tray, cover loosely and leave in a warm(25-27°C) place to proof
For about 2-3 hours
In the mean time, make the frangipane and set aside.
Proofed squares will look puffy and swollen. Pre heat the oven to 400°F, before you start to decorate these.
wash and slice the fruit. I did this design with strawberries. With apricots, peaches slice them and you can overlap the slices to create a beautiful pattern
Before piping the almond cream, press the centers slightly to create an indent
Pipe a thin layer of frangipane and spread using a spatula or your fingers.
Do not over fill with frangipane or the center won’t be cooked through.
Place the fruit in the center and press on to the frangipane
Repeat until all the squares are decorated
Beat an egg, and lightly egg wash the edges
These are now ready for the oven.
Bake in the 400 °F oven for 20 – 25 minutes or until the tops are golden brown.
Rotate the tray if necessary towards the end of the bake to make sure all of them are evenly baked.
Once out of the oven, lightly brush the fruit with melted jam (apricot,/strawberry)
Leave to cool. Dust with icing sugar before serving