A month ago, the rest of the French Fridays gang presented their posts on Dorie’s brioche recipe. I missed out on that, but this week’s recipe turned out to be the perfect excuse to catch up. I chose to use Dorie’s bonne idée for this recipe, rather than making the bubble-top rolls. A loaf works much better for tartines, after all. I also wanted to make braided loaves, just because I think they look so lovely.
Brioche is one of those breads that intimidate home bakers, me included. But, with the help of a sturdy stand mixer, all things are possible. When it comes to bread, anyway. The only other obstacle to brioche success is my penchant for doing things at the last minute. I’m usually one of the last to post my link on the French Fridays site and it’s not just because I’m on the west coast. This time I forced myself to plan ahead.
Making brioche, aside from the worries about overheating the stand mixer during the ten-minute kneading process, is pleasantly slow. Once the dough’s first rise is done, it’s put into the refrigerator and deflated at intervals until the yeast gives up. After an overnight rest, it’s shaped and then left at room temperature to warm enough for the yeast to become active again. After that final rise, into the oven it goes.
What you get for your patience is a light, eggy, buttery loaf, with a rich yeastiness that’s a result of holding back the dough’s rise for so long. It’s just made for tartines (and French toast, too).
A tartine is an open-faced sandwich, usually with a decadent topping. I think this Nutella tartine qualifies. The slices of bread are brushed with melted butter, then toasted under the broiler. Mine got a little too toasted around the edges, but not enough to affect the taste.
This tartine starts with a layer of bitter orange marmalade, then streaks of warmed, softened Nutella are added on top. It’s finished with chopped hazelnuts (which I skipped) and some sea salt.
Apparently, a slice of bread with Nutella is a traditional after-school snack in France. With Dorie’s additions, I’m sure many parents might be tempted to keep these tartines all to themselves.