Monday, June 16, 2014

[My Treasured Recipes #1] - Japanese Cream Bread with Mexican Topping (日本奶油面包)

I just couldn't resist taking numerous pictures of this Japanese Cream Bread that I made over the weekend. The weather was really good, so the bread rose to perfection very quickly, in fact I covered the dough with greased clingwrap and left it under the hot sun, and after 45 min, droplets of condensation appeared on the underside of the clingwrap. OMG, this was indeed something rare in cold Belgium and can only happen in hot summer! After the bread was out from the oven, I was still able to take some nice pictures in natural light during sunset. Everything was perfect. The mexican topping did not go haywire as what happened to my roti-boy buns 2 years ago. I made the right choice in squeezing the doughs into 2 cake pans instead of 4 loaf pans. The little dough balls rested snugly against each other and the mexican topping managed to spread evenly across the entire surface area on top, creating a bunch of lovely roti-boy buns. 

But these were not exactly roti-boy buns (aka mexican buns with coffee toppings). Because the topping was not coffee-flavoured topping. But the taste was just as authentic, it was sweet and crunchy due to the mexican topping, and the texture of the buns was soft and fluffy and would remain so even after 2-3 days. However, I doubt if the buns will last that long, they are so delicious that they will normally be finished within an hour or two!!! 

This Japanese Cream Bread is a typical sweet bread dough from Alex Goh. You have to prepare the scalded dough starter 12 hours in advance and leave it in the fridge. The dough has to undergo extensive kneading of 30 to 40 minutes using a stand-mixer or bread machine until it achieves the windowpane or membrane stage whereby the dough can be stretched thinly like a membrane without breaking. It is possible to knead by hand, I know a lady who regularly leaves comments on my blog, who does exactly that, the kneading of Alex Goh's sweet bread dough by hand. It is very tedious but it can be done, all you need is strong arms and a lot of patience. Well, bread-baking requires a lot of patience, but you will be handsomely rewarded with the fruits of your labour, that's what baking bread is all about! :)

Recipe adapted from Alex Goh's Magic Bread 

(As this recipe is available on internet, there is no point of me being brief or obscure about the method to avoid violating the IP rights, so I will just write the detailed method in my own words)

Ingredients A (overnight dough-starter)
120g bread flour
85g boiling water

Ingredients B
380g bread flour 
75g sugar
6g salt (1 tsp)
8g instant yeast (1 tbsp)

Ingredients C
120g cold milk
100g whipping cream
1 cold egg

Ingredients D (cut into small cubes)
40g butter

Mexican Topping
60g butter
50g sugar
1 egg
65g flour
1/4 tsp baking powder

1. Add the boiling water from A into the bread flour and mix until well-blended to form dough. Set aside to cool. Cover with clingwrap and keep in the fridge for at least 12 hours. (This dough is called the "scalded dough" or the "gelatinized dough", the mixing of the scalded dough should just take 2 to 3 min using wooden spoon or spatula.)

2. (After 12 hours) Mix B until well-blended. Add in C (cold milk, whipping cream and cold egg) and knead to form rough dough. Add in A (overnight dough-starter cut into small pieces) and knead until well-blended.

3. Add in D (diced butter) and knead to form an elastic dough. (Pls refer to my blog post on how to make Alex Goh sweet bread dough for a step-by-step pictorial illustration. The dough needs to pass the membrane test or poke-a-hole test. If you are using bread machine dough function, it will take you between 30 to 40 min. For me, I have always kneaded 40 min using my BM dough function, I would press dough function, let it knead for 20 min, stop and restart dough function and let it knead for 20 min again.)

4. Cover the dough with greased clingwrap or damp kitchen towel and let it proof for 40 min or until doubled in volume. 

5. Punch down the dough to release air, then divide the dough into required weight (in this case 12 pieces of 80g each), shape it round by pinching the corners together, then place the buns sitting on the pinched side, with the smooth side facing up. Let them rest for 10 min covered. (The weight of my dough was just nice, 973 grams yielded 12 pieces of about 80g each.)

6. The book indicated that you should flatten the dough and roll it up into swiss roll, then place 3 pieces of the dough into a greased 17 x 9 x 6.5 cm loaf tin. You will need 4 such loaf tins and this will make 4 loafs. (However I decided to use a 8-inch chiffon tin and a 7-inch heart-shaped cake tin instead of 4 loaf tins. I managed to squeeze 6 pieces of dough into my chiffon tin and another 6 into my heart-shaped tin.)

7. Again, cover the dough and let them proof a 2nd time for 50 min.

8. Finally prepare some Mexican topping and pipe it on top. (For the Mexican topping, just cream butter with sugar with a cake-mixer until well-blended, then add in egg and cream until smooth. Finally add in sifted flour and baking powder and mix well. Place the Mexican topping into a piping bag, cut a hole and you can start piping. You don't necessarily have to use a piping tip. )

9. Bake in a preheated oven in the middle shelf at 180C for 20 to 25 min. 

10. Remove the buns from oven when ready, let them cool for a while before unmoulding the buns. Upon cooling, store them in an airtight container to keep fresh.

[Important : I hope you enjoy this bread as much as I do, and I would be happy if you could give credit where credit is due, and link back to this post if you do make this bread and share it on your blog or facebook. Remember plagiarism is not the best form of flattery.]

I am submitting this post to "My Treasured Recipes - Alex Goh (June/July 2014)" hosted by myself, Miss B of Everybody Eats Well in Flanders and co-hosted by Charmaine of Mimi Bakery House.

I am linking this post to Little Thumbs Up (June 2014 - Butter) organized by Zoe of Bake for Happy KidsMui Mui of My Little Favourite DIY and Jozelyn Ng of Spice Up My Kitchen.

Also linking this post to Cook-Your-Books #13 hosted by Joyce of Kitchen Flavours.

And to YeastSpotting.


  1. I like the mexican topping...bread looks so soft...

    Thanks for linking!

  2. wow! very beautiful texture.... i love to just pinch this off and eat it right away!

  3. Such lovely bread! The texture is really soft and fluffy. I have used his sweet Japanese bread dough recipe for other breads but have not tried this Mexican topping yet.
    Perfect with a cup of Kopi-O! :)

  4. Hi Miss B,

    I remember this recipe! This is one of my fav Alex Goh's recipes :D

    Yours look wonderful!


  5. Hi Ms B

    I have not tried the topping even thou its on my to do list, your picture really look tempting. I've got to try this real soon... :p

    Wendy C


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