(If this recipe is a little complicated for you, you can use the
Basic Sweet dough recipe #178, click here.)
For the Sponge:
1 cup whole milk
1 tbsp quick rising yeast or instant
1 tbsp sugar
1 cup bread flour
3) Let this mixture sit for a few minutes until it becomes foamy about 10 to 15 minutes.
4) Mix in the flour and stir with a sturdy wooden spoon.
5) Cover with a plastic wrap and let it rise for about 20 minutes or until bubbly. This will be a sticky, wet dough but should not be runny.
This mixture is called sponge and will be mixed in with the dough.
3/4 cup milk, very warm
1 1/2 sticks butter, softened
2/3 cup white sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
4 large large eggs, slightly beaten (1 cup)
4 1/2 to 5 cups bread flour
1 tsp salt
1 tsp dough enhancer (my secret ingredient)
1 tsp vital wheat gluten (another secret ingredient)
3) When the cycle is finished, take the dough out and place it in a well-greased bowl and cover with a plastic wrap to rise until doubled in bulk.
This is the SECOND RISING.
Option: Instead of transferring the dough into a bowl, you can leave the dough in the bread machine bucket or pan, put the lid down and let the dough rise until doubled in bulk.
3) Do the same thing with the other half of dough, cutting it into 12 pieces, so you have 24 pieces all together.
4) Roll dough into ropes about 8 inches long, fat on one end and tapered on the other end. Take the fat end with your forefinger and thumb and coil dough around tucking the tapered end under.
5) For braided ensaymada, divide dough into 48 pieces. Twist together 2 ropes. Hold the twisted dough with your forefinger and thumb, and coil the rest of dough around, tucking the tapered end under.
6) Place coiled dough in greased molds.
(Sorry, I did not get to take pictures while braiding the doughs. Burnt Lumpia, a blog, gives a very good illustrations on how to braid the doughs. Click here for the link).
This recipe makes 24 braided pieces using the ensaymada moulds with base measuring
2 1/4 inches in diameter.
If you're using ensaymada molds, grease each mold with shortening, then place the molds on a cookie sheet.
If using cookie sheets without the molds, line the sheets with parchment papers.
The 3rd Rising
This is an important process in order
to achieve a flavorful pillow-soft, but not airy rolls
The picture above is recycled from ensaymada recipe #113.
2) Turn the oven on for just 1 minute or until the temperature reaches 8o degrees and then turn it off. (Make sure the temperature is not hotter than 80 degrees).
3) Place the cookie sheet with the ensaymadas below the middle rack, then shut the oven door. Let the dough rise until they are soft and springy to the touch, about 20-30 minutes.
4) Or boil some water in a pot and place this pot right on the oven floor.
5) With the oven door shut, let the dough rise for about 30 minutes or longer.
6) When dough has doubled in size, soft and spongy or springy to the touch, take the pan and pot out and turn the oven on to 350 degrees to pre-heat.
7) Bake the ensaymadas for 18-20 minutes.
They are good for meriendas or for breakfast.
1) You can use this recipe for almost any kind or shape you want such as for dinner rolls, croissant rolls, Parker house rolls, etc.
2) If you want to let the dough rise overnight in the fridge, here's some tips:
a) use regular yeast, not instant as the dough might rise too fast if you use the instant kind.
b) after the dough cycle if finished, take the dough out and place it in a well greased bowl, turning it upside down to coat the other side of dough with grease or oil. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and put it in the fridge overnight,(about 8 hours). The next day take out dough and let it stand for about 1 hour then proceed to the rest of the procedure, i.e. punch dough down, shape, etc.
3) Store this kind of breads in plastic bread bags or in air tight containers to keep them soft for days. Microwave old rolls for 10-15 seconds to make them oven-fresh.
Do not store them in paper bags as they will get hard. French breads and baguettes kind of breads are stored in paper sacks to keep their nice crusts.
- Don't bother heating the orange juice to lukewarm; you can use it straight out of the fridge. The orange juice won't add its own flavor to the bread, but will mellow any potential bitterness in the whole wheat.
- If you're kneading bread by hand, it's tempting to keep adding flour till the dough is no longer sticky. Resist the temptation! The more flour you add while you're kneading, the heavier and drier your final loaf will be.
- The amount of liquid you use to make the "perfect" dough will vary with the seasons. Flour is like a sponge; it absorbs water during the humid days of summer, and dries out during the winter. Your goal should be making the dough as it's described (e.g., cohesive, soft but not sticky), rather than sticking religiously to the amount of liquid.
- When making yeast bread, let the dough rise to the point the recipe says it should, e.g., "Let the dough rise till it's doubled in bulk." Rising times are only a guide; there are so many variables in yeast baking (how you kneaded the dough; what kind of yeast you used) that it's impossible to say that bread dough will ALWAYS double in bulk in a specific amount of time.