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Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Culinary School - Session 31: Pannetone, Pain de Mie, Brioche Fruit Tart and Beehive


Culinary School: Session 31 (10.27.14)

Pannetone, Pain de Mie, Brioche Fruit Tart and Beehive



The end of Viennoiserie...

Yet another orange-flavored holiday bread and some delicious Pain de Mie (the ideal sandwich bread, in my humble opinion) mark the end of our Viennoiserie-focused introduction to breads

This section was firmly focused on enriched breads - butter, egg and sugar loaded pastries, which in many instances are desserts disguised as breakfast. The second bread section in late November will concentrate on lean breads: Bagels, English Muffins... even Pizza!


And off to cake!

Next up is a three week introduction to cakes. It's a pretty intensive beginning, as detailed in the syllabus. In surveying the class, I feel most people enroll in the Pastry Program specifically for the cake units. I feel lucky that cakes have never been a huge area of personal focus. But the comprehensive training that's on the horizon is... well... icing on the cake.

Beehive (Ruche) - Brioche Honey Cake



And a little something special for Halloween.

A great thing about Culinary School is that there are always additional training sessions offered to round out the core curriculum. Before yesterday, I had never worked with Marzipan cake decorations. So, with the cake unit around the corner, some additional training - albeit in Halloween form - seemed like a good idea.


I'm not sure if there will every be much demand for severed finger decorations... but if there is, I'm ready.

Marzipan Severed Finger

Marzipan Severed Finger



- Ingredients Running Tally -



At the beginning of this bread section, I promised the flour numbers would soar. I think 150 pounds for the class in just five sessions is pretty solid.

Ingredients used to date (10.27.14):
  • Flour: 14,050g
  • Eggs: 6,150g (123x)
  • Sugar: 6,675g
  • Butter: 8,475g
  • Milk/Cream: 6,800g



- The Recipes -



Item:

Pannetone


Description:
Yet another Christmas bread... flavored with lemon and orange zest... and filled with raisins. 

The similarities between Pannetone, Kugelhopf, Stollen and even Fruit Cake have to be called out. Italy, Austria, Germany, France... each country seems to have developed its own variation on a theme.

With Pannetone, the distinguishing feature is its tall, straight-walled form which is achieved using paper molds. But this highly recognizable shape is a relatively recent development (particularly when considered in the context of bread-making history). In 1920, Angelo Motto introduced the molds at his factory in Italy. Prior to this innovation, a Pannetone was yet another rustic, dense, fruit and nut laden bread which probably better resembled a Stollen.

Focus Techniques:
- Using a sponge to help develop the gluten structure. Pannetone is a highly enriched bread with a high fat content from eggs and butter. Developing a strong gluten network prior to adding much of the gluten-inhibiting fat ensures a stronger structure.
- Adding raisins to the bread just before the final proof. Adding pieces of fruit earlier in the process would further disrupt the gluten network.



Item:

Pain de Mie 


Description:
Pain de Mie (also known as Pullman Bread in the U.S.) is truly unique in how it is baked - inside a special Pullman Pan.

With high straight walls and a tight fitting lid, this special pan creates a perfectly symmetrical loafThe pan confines the dough as it proofs before baking and while it expands in the oven. The result is a structurally sturdy loaf with a very fine, even crumb. The bread is also recognized for its uniformly thin crust. Given the strength of the crumb, the bread can be sliced very thin, making it ideal for sandwiches.

Focus Techniques:
- Using the direct mix / autolyse method, mixing all of the ingredients together (except the yeast) and allowing them to rest for 10-15 minutes. The process allow the dough to "get a head start" on the fermentation and gluten structure development process prior to adding yeast to the mix. The method is only appropriate for lean doughs.
- Shaping a loaf through a series of tight folds and tucks. Simply rolling the dough loosely will result in a poorly formed loaf where the layers are readily apparent.


Pain de Mie Mold


Pain de Mie Cross Section



Item:

Brioche Fruit Tart (Tarte de Brioche aux Fruits)


Description:
It would seem that every unit in culinary school gets some version of a "Tarte aux Fruits". There was the Fresh Fruit Tart (Tarte aux Fruits Fraise), the Baked Fruit Tart, the Fresh Fruit Tartlets, the Fruit Strip (Bande de Tarte aux Fruit) and the Bar Tart (Tarte Feuillettee).

Each version typically comprised some form of crust layered with pastry cream or Creme D'Amandes that was covered with fruit. The fruit used in each tart varied by season. And the dough used for the base crust was typically the product being highlighted in a particular session.

It's no different with the Brioche Fruit Tart. This time, the crust is a rich, brioche bread. The result is a more chewy (and surprise, surprise), bready variation.

Focus Techniques:
- Thinly stretching the brioche dough to fill a ring mold and form a crust. To avoid ripping the dough, it is best to let the dough rest between stretches so that the gluten network can relax.
- Spreading a layer of cake crumbs or Feuilletine between the pastry cream and fresh fruit to absorb excess moisture.

Overhead View of Brioche Fruit Tart with Apricots

Brioche Fruit Tart with Apricots

Baked Brioche Fruit Tart with Apricots




Item:

Beehive (Ruche)


Description:
The perfect segue from Viennoiserie to Cakes. The Beehive or Ruche is a single brioche round that is sliced horizontally, brushed with a honey and wine soak, layered with pastry cream and finished with circles of piped meringue. The end product resembles a beehive. 

The meringue exterior is lightly torched to create some color and contrast, and the entire cake is drizzled with honey and dotted with marzipan bees. It's a rather whimsical way to eat your morning toast.

Focus Techniques:
- Forming a brioche round and baking it in a Pannetone mold.
- Cutting straight layers with a serrated knife on a cake turn-table. A guiding line is first scored into the bread while slowly rotating the turntable. Once an even line has been drawn, shallow cuts are made using a sawing motion to create a flat, clean slice through the entire loaf.
- Using a cake soak of caramelized honey and white wine to moisten and flavor the bread.
- Making a Swiss Meringue using a double boiler. To achieve a smooth, stable meringue, the egg whites and sugar must be whipped starting at a low speed.
- Forming bees out of marzipan. The bodies are simple ovals with a slightly pointed "stinger" at one end. Melted chocolate is piped with a cornet to create strips across the backs. Almond slivers are used to form swings. 


Sliced Brioche with Pastry Cream Layers for Beehive

Meringue Covered Brioche for Beehive

Finished Beehive


Take a look at the full syllabus




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