Brioche Bread- Need help !!

Joined Jan 26, 2016
I have been thinking of making bread at home for a long time but I was so scared that it wont turn out good. But finally yesterday I decided to give it a go. I found a recipe online for a Braided Brioche and thought of following it. The recipe called for oil instead of butter. I guess the bread turned out good but not what I expected. It was not that fluffy and light (it felt a little bit dense that any other normal bread).Was it because I used oil ? Here is how it looked like -

Joined Dec 1, 2015
That's probably a recipe for challah.  I make it all they time.  It uses oil instead of butter so that it can be eaten with meat (kosher) but otherwise the recipes are very similar.

However, I also make lots of brioche.  I find that the texture of both are comparable although I agree the challah can seem a bit heavier but should still have a pretty open crumb, and the butter in the brioche gives it a slightly richer flavor.

I would suggest that maybe after braiding, the proofing rise was not long enough?  That's what usually happens to me when I get a heavier loaf, I was rushing that part.

Challah makes outstanding French toast and I also cube it and dry it out for bread pudding.

Good luck.
Joined Dec 1, 2015
P.S.  I thought of 2 other things.

Sometimes I use only the egg yolks instead of whole eggs and/or I tend to use a little more water than most recipes call for because my flour always seems on the "dry" side here in the Midwest.  Both of these things tend to get me a lighter loaf.

Joined Jul 28, 2001
Two schools of thought on the butter for the Brioche. Many formulas call for retarding the dough a long time or overnight. For these formulas you use room temp or soften butter.

If your not going to retard a long time, the butter should be cut into small chunks and as cold as you can get. This way the friction of the mixer or your hands does not melt the butter.

  Honestly, no oil in traditional Brioche.

A little milk is also very acceptable.

 If you use the softened butter and mix to long you end up with a slack dough, making it dense.

Always do a windowpane test with Brioche, especially when the percentage of butter is increased.

I think traditional Brioche is one of the best finished products. It might take a couple of times to get what you like. It can be very

versatile, hamburger rolls, chicken salad, bread service with a gamy protein, etc. and like rpooley mentioned, the best French toast ever!etc.

 Don't give up on it, it's a great formula to have and pass along. I wish I had a scaled down version to give you but mine are for a minimum

60 lbs.

BTW, your braid looks really nice and it good to hear you had the courage to try an old standard.
Joined Jun 23, 2015
Get a copy of The Bread Baler's Apprentice by Peter Reinhart.  It is a very good book on baking bread.  In this book he explains how to bake Brioche step by step and why you do each step.  Good luck.  
Joined Jan 26, 2016
@rpooley - well  the second proofing time was 1 hour and that was when i thought the bread had spread a bit flat and didnt hold its shape well.

@panini - thanks for all the suggestions. I wont give up on this and will try the traditional brioche again keeping in mind all the tips.

@Jimyra  - thanks for referring the book. Will surely get it.

@chefbuba  - Will have a look at the video.

Thank you all for giving me tips and for encouraging me to make bread at home. I will keep trying it till I get it right.
Joined Aug 14, 2000
Bread baking takes a lot of practice and brioche is a pretty advanced bread. When I first started baking bread someone gave me some very good advice. Find a simple white bread reccipe and make it over and over again.

You will learn what the dough should feel like in order to achieve the results you want. For example a softer/stickier dough yields breads with more open texture. A firmer dough will yield a more dense loaf. Your hands will become smarter and your breads will get better.

Here's a basic white bread recipe. I've not made this particular bread but it will do the trick. Once you begin to understand the basics of bread baking the more dvanced breads like brioche become easier :)


TOTAL TIME: Prep: 20 min. + rising Bake: 30 min. + coolingYIELD:32 servings
1 package (1/4 ounce) active dry yeast
2-1/4 cups warm water (110° to 115°)
3 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon salt
2 tablespoons canola oil
6-1/4 to 6-3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1. In a large bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water. Add the sugar, salt, oil and 3 cups flour. Beat until smooth. Stir in enough remaining flour to form a soft dough.
2. Turn onto a floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, about 8-10 minutes. Place in a greased bowl, turning once to grease the top. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1-1/2 hours.
3. Punch dough down. Turn onto a lightly floured surface; divide dough in half. Shape each into a loaf. Place in two greased 9-in. x 5-in. loaf pans. Cover and let rise until doubled, about 30-45 minutes.
4. Bake at 375° for 30-35 minutes or until golden brown and bread sounds hollow when tapped. Remove from pans to wire racks to cool. Yield: 2 loaves (16 slices each).
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Joined Aug 14, 2000
It's worth it. Bread baking awesome [emoji]128522[/emoji]
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Joined Jan 26, 2016
When I made this bread for the first time , I was so kinda proud of myself that it did not go entirely wrong coz I did it for the very first time. Now I will keep trying till I get it right. It feels sooooo good to have home baked bread.
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Joined May 5, 2010
Making Brioche is a combination of technique and time.

Using oil will not give you the texture and crumb of the ideal Brioche.

The technique of incorporating the butter is also very important.

The dough must stay cool through out the whole process.

The initial dough and the butter get combined in steps so the end product comes out as it should.

I think the recipe the OP chose was the problem.

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