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Brioche with Lemon Curd

Greg Wade
“Lemon Curd Brioche Buns are made to lighten our spirits and welcome the summer months, utilizing bright winter lemons to create a curd as a filling for a super-soft sweet brioche. Feel free to substitute orange juice & zest for the lemon if you prefer, and it’s also completely acceptable to buy curd from your favorite local producer. I love topping these with fresh summer berries. This treat pairs wonderfully with Dough’s North Coast Chardonnay.” - Greg Wade
Cook Time 20 mins
Course Appetizer, Snack
Servings 12 Buns

Ingredients
  

Lemon Curd Recipe

  • 55 g Egg (1 egg)
  • 100 g Egg yolks
  • 200 g Sugar
  • 5 g Lemon zest
  • 150 g Lemon juice
  • 125 g Butter
  • 10 g Vanilla extract
  • 1 g Salt

Brioche Recipe

  • 220 g Bread flour
  • 130 g Milk
  • 60 g Egg yolk
  • 22 g Honey
  • 10 g Vanilla extract
  • 6 g Salt
  • 4 g Active dry yeast
  • 165 g Butter, soft but not greasy - reserve

Instructions
 

Lemon Curd Method

  • In a small pot, combine the egg, egg yolks, sugar, lemon zest and lemon juice. Whisk to combine thoroughly.
  • Cook over medium low heat, stirring with a spatula constantly to prevent scorching. When the curd starts to slightly thicken, around 150F, add the butter. It should take about 5 minutes to reach this point.
  • Continue to stir the mixture over medium low heat until the mixture thickens substantially and reaches 190F, this should take another 5 or so minutes.
  • Strain the curd through a fine mesh strainer, whisk in the vanilla extract and salt, and refrigerate until needed. It is best to make this the same day you make the brioche dough and let both rest in the refrigerator overnight.

Mixing Method

  • In a bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook, combine the bread flour, milk, egg yolk, vanilla extract, salt & yeast. Withhold the butter.
  • Mix on slow speed for 2-3 minutes until all the dry ingredients are absorbed and a dough is formed.
  • Mix on high speed for 8-10 minutes or until the dough is smooth, shiny and very strong.
  • Once the dough is strong, turn the mixer back down to slow speed and add your butter. The butter will incorporate nicely if you pinch off marble-sized pieces and drop them in the mixer bowl while the mixer is running. Adding the butter should take about 5 minutes on slow speed.
  • Once the butter is incorporated, cover the dough in the bowl and let ferment at room temperature for 2 hours. The dough should grow during that time, but might not completely double in size.
  • Fold the dough by picking up each side and folding it over the middle of the dough. Refrigerate the brioche, covered, overnight.

Shape, Proof & Bake

  • The following day, take the dough out of the refrigerator and place it onto a floured surface. Divide the dough into 12 equal portions, they should each weigh about 50 grams.
  • Round the dough pieces and place them onto a baking tray lined with a piece of parchment paper. Spread them out across the tray so they won’t touch once proofed.
  • Cover lightly with plastic and place in a warm area to proof for about 2 hours, they should double in size.
  • Preheat an oven to 350F.
  • Once proofed, dip your fingers in water and press down into the center of each bun, spreading the bun apart to create a well. There should not be a hole in the dough - you are not creating a ring, but more like a bread raft with a bottom and walls. Getting your fingers wet will prevent the dough from sticking to you.
  • Place 2 tablespoons of the curd into the well, or use a small cookie scoop to portion the curd into the dough. Egg wash the dough, sprinkle with pearl sugar if desired.
  • Bake at 350F for about 20 minutes, or until golden brown and delicious. Allow to cool for at least 20 minutes before enjoying.