Posts Tagged ‘pain viennois’

Christina’s brother James is one of the nicest, most interesting people you’re ever likely to meet.

While we were chatting at Christina’s birthday party (themed 1970’s, so James was in a Luke Skywalker t-shirt and I was in a bright orange kaftan), he mentioned that he was planning to make blackberry jam for his wedding.  As a present. For every one of the sixty guests.

And James isn’t one to do things by half measures – first he was going to make pectin from scratch (using his dad’s homegrown apples), and then he was planning to spend a weekend blackberry picking to gather enough fruit for the jam.  His ever patient bride-to-be Suzanne just smiled as we discussed the intricacies of jar sizes and hot water processing.

A week or so later, Chris’ hubby Steve dropped around a jar of the  aforementioned blackberry jam.  I was both excited and somewhat surprised at  how quickly the whole plan had been put into action –  when James sets his mind to something, he clearly doesn’t procrastinate!

Serendipitously, the following day, Diana gave me frozen blackberries from her farm.  I couldn’t resist combining the two into a sweet weekend treat.

Inspired by the Blackcurrant Crown recipe in Dan Lepard’s The Handmade Loaf, I made a version using our pain viennois dough (the step by step instructions are here), Di’s frozen blackberries, and James’ blackberry jam. It was an absolute treat – buttery, briochey and filled with oozing fruit.

  • 1 batch pain viennois dough
  • blackberry jam
  • 100g fresh or frozen blackberries
  • 100g brown sugar (I used rapadura sugar)

1.  Prepare the dough and allow it to rise in the mixing  bowl until doubled in size.  In the meantime, grease a 10 cup bundt pan well.

2. In a separate bowl, stir together the brown sugar and blackberries.

3. Turn the risen dough out onto an oiled bench and divide it into 18 x 50g pieces.  Shape each piece into a ball.

4.  Turn each ball seam-side up, and flatten it out.  Spoon a scant teaspoon of blackberry jam into the middle of the circle…

…and then gather the edges together to enclose the jam completely.

5. Layer the filled balls into the bundt pan, sprinkling with the blackberries and sugar as you go.  Don’t squash them in too tightly.

6. Once all the balls are layered into the pan, cover and allow to rise in a warm spot until puffed up (Dan’s recipe specifies letting the dough rise until doubled in size, but mine didn’t rise that much).  Preheat the oven to 200C with fan.

7. Bake the crown in the oven for 10 – 15 minutes at 200C with fan, then reduce the heat and bake for a further 20 – 30 minutes at 175C with fan.  The top of the crown went very brown in my oven, so I dropped the heat after 10 minutes.  Do keep an eye on this – particularly if you’re using a cast aluminium bundt pan as I was – as it can colour up very quickly.  I let mine cook an extra few minutes to dry up the berry juices.

Edit: Living Delilah made this recipe, and found that the brown sugar burnt during baking.  Do watch out for that and if your oven runs hot or you’re using cast aluminium, you might want to lower the starting temperature by 10 degrees or so, or reduce the initial baking time at the higher temp.

8. Rest the pan for five minutes before carefully turning it onto a plate (watch out for the hot syrup).  Serve the crown warm, with a hot cup of tea!

Click here for step by step instructions for the pain viennois dough.

Click here for a printable version of this recipe.

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Here’s what was waiting for Big Boy when he came home from school today.

I’d made pain viennois à la Richard Bertinet, using a recipe from his wonderful book Dough.  This after school treat is traditionally served with a stick of chocolate;  in this case a bar of tempered Callebaut 70%.  It was a surprisingly delicious combination.

If you haven’t tried this sweet dough recipe, I hope the photo will encourage you to give it a go.  It’s a very useful addition to your bread baking repertoire.  Our jam doughnuts were made from this dough, as were the hot cross buns we made at Easter.  Because it’s not overly sweet, the dough can also be used for savoury items – Bertinet’s book includes recipes for a bacon slice and croque monsieur, both based around this recipe.

Pain Viennois

  • 500g bread flour
  • 10g instant yeast
  • 7g fine sea salt
  • 40g caster (superfine) sugar
  • 60g unsalted butter
  • 2 large (59g) eggs
  • 250g full cream milk, at blood temperature, or UHT milk, unrefrigerated

Note: UHT milk has a long shelf life and is purchased in cartons from the supermarket shelf.

1. Whisk together the dried yeast and bread flour in a large, wide mixing bowl.  Add the salt and sugar and whisk in well.

2. Add the unsalted butter, cut into small cubes, then rub the butter into the flour mixture until well crumbled.

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3. Add the eggs and milk, then mix together with a spatula until it forms a shaggy dough.  Cover with a tea towel and allow to rest for 10 minutes. Note that this recipe uses two eggs – the photo below was from a double batch.

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4. Knead the dough until smooth.

5. Oil the scraped-out mixing bowl, then return the dough to the bowl, cover with clingfilm and allow to rise until doubled in size (about an hour).

6. Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface and gently fold it onto itself. Divide the dough into five pieces, then shape each piece into a long roll.  Place the baguettes on a tray lined with parchment paper, allowing room to spread.  Brush each roll with two coats of beaten egg, before making several deep cuts diagonally across the top with a razor or sharp knife.  Preheat the oven to 200C (with fan).


7. Allow the dough to prove for second time until puffed up, then bake in the preheated oven for 10 – 15 minutes, until dark golden brown.  The finished baguette has a brioche-like quality and can be used for a variety of sweet and savoury applications. Make sure you try one stuffed with a good quality chocolate bar!

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