On a recent trip to Hong Kong, I lugged back 2 kg of casarine flour. This flour is produced by Nippon Co., Ltd specially for the Taiwan market. It is not available in Singapore at the time of my trip. I hope they import this flour soon.
The name, in mandarin, reads as a toast that weeps. No idea why such a name, but whatever you name it, the taste and texture of this bread is really good. It is soft and moist, and stays soft and moist for 3 days, at least. So try this out, if you get a chance to grab a bag of casarine flour.
- 1 gram instant dry yeast
- 200 grams room temperature water
- 1 gram malt extract
- 350 grams casarine flour
- some cultured butter to grease mixing bowl and proofing bowl
- Mix yeast, water and malt extract together.
- Add flour to mixing bowl and turn to low speed. Gradually add in yeast mixture.
- Once the ingredients start to form a dough, turn to medium speed and mix until dough reaches window pane stage.
- Stop the mixer and grease the side of the bowl. This will stop the dough from sticking.
- Lightly grease a large bowl for proofing dough. Scrape the dough into the bowl. There is no need to form the dough into a ball.
- Proof at room temperature for an hour. Cover with cling wrap and leave in the fridge for 12 hours at least.
- all the starter dough
- 150 grams casarine flour
- 10 grams milk powder
- 1.5 grams instant dry yeast
- 5 grams salt
- 40 grams castor sugar
- 125 grams room temperature water
- 30 grams cultured butter (see below)
- 10 grams cultured butter, melted, for brushing bowl
- Prepare a standard loaf pan.
- Mix casarine flour, milk powder and yeast in a bowl. Set aside.
- Add the starter dough, salt and sugar in the mixing bowl. Mix on low.
- With the mixer running, alternately add in flour and water.
- Once a dough forms, add in butter.
- Mix on medium until dough reaches window pane stage.
- Turn mixer to low. Brush the sides of the bowl with melted butter and let the butter pool at the bottom of the bowl.
- Remove dough from dough hook, cover with cling wrap and proof for 30 minutes. There is no need to shape the dough.
- Divide dough into 3. Shape into balls and leave to rest, uncovered for 10 minutes.
- Roll each ball into a rectangle. I could not roll it much since it kept springing back. This step is to roll the dough into a swiss roll. Leave to rest, uncovered for 10 minutes.
- Flatten the dough gently and gently roll into a swiss roll, this time from the shorter side, so it can fit into the loaf pan. Take care not to tear the dough surface (good luck on that one). The dough is quite sticky and I had to flour the work board quite liberally.
- Let dough proof until it reaches 70% of the pan. 15 minutes before it is ready, preheat the oven to 200 C.
- Bake for 45 minutes until internal temperature of bread reaches 88 C or 190 F. Cover top with aluminium foil since the bread will rise quite high.
- Remove from pan immediately to a cooling rack.
For this recipe, I made cultured butter. Yeah, I’m nuts sometimes about following the recipe. I could not find any cultured butter around the area where I stay or work. So I followed the instructions on Cultures for Health and added 4 tbsp of yogurt to 1 litre of whipping cream, left it for about 7 hours at room temperature then placed it in the fridge overnight. The next day, the texture was slightly thicker than normal whipping cream. I whipped it into butter, washed the butter, then strained it in a cheesecloth. The buttermilk I got was used for pancakes and it tasted divine.
You can also use the buttermilk in place of water for this bread.
The steps to making the bread were one of the more detailed ones I’ve seen. My oven cannot separately control top and bottom temperature, so I used 200 C throughout and covered the top with aluminium foil. If you have such a good oven, use 150 C top and 210 C bottom, and the baking time stated is 30-35 minutes. I did test the internal temperature at the 30th minute and it was just 148 F so it was not done yet.
So was all the work worth it?
Yes. If you would like to make a loaf of soft, moist and tasty bread without any chemical preservatives, additives or agents to improve the bread texture. This is the bread I’ve made with the best texture so far. The long proofing of the starter dough, which contains the majority of the total dough, improves flavour and possibly makes it easier to digest.