Chai Spiced Brioche Loaf

This Chai Spiced Brioche Loaf was snaffled so quickly by my family. Aromatic, still warm from the oven I had it with just a little extra butter - simply divine. This recipe is a conversion of a wheat based recipe that appeared in the August 2016 edition of Taste magazine.

Ingredients

Chai Infusion

300 g Milk

1.5 tbs Chai tea (I used one with vanilla)

6 Cardamon pods

1 Cinnamon stick

2 Star anise

2 tsp Orange zest

 

Brioche

285 g Strained chai milk

2 tsp Yeast (dried)

70 g Raw sugar

2 Eggs

325 g Bakers' Magic Gluten free flour

75 g Maize starch

1 tsp Salt

125 g Butter (room temperature & in cubes)

 

Filling

150 g Macadamias (the original used pistachios)

150 g Butter (cold)

70 g Raw sugar

55 g Brown sugar

80 g Bakers' Magic Gluten free flour

2 tsp Ginger (ground)

2 tsp Cinnamon

1/4 tsp Cardamon

1/4 tsp Poppy seeds

1/4 tsp Cloves

 

Glaze

50 g Raw sugar

50 g Boiling water

2 tsp Chai tea (loose leaf)

 

Method

Combine the milk, chai, cardamon, cinnamon, star anise & zest in a saucepan over medium - low heat. Bring the milk to the boil, reduce heat & simmer for 2 mins. Turn off heat & set aside for 15 mins.

You will need 285 g of the infused milk to make the brioche. I usually put an empty bowl on my digital scales & zero it, then strain the milk through a sieve into the bowl. Add water to 285 g.

Add yeast & 20 g of the sugar into the infused milk. Set aside for 10 - 15 mins, stirring occasionally, until slightly frothy.

Lightly toast/roast the macadamias or pistachios.

Transfer nuts to a food processor & whiz until finely chopped. Add in the remaining filling ingredients (except the poppy seeds) & process until just combined. Set aside nut mix.   

Stir the eggs into the infused milk.

Mix together Bakers' Magic Gluten free flour, maize starch, remaining sugar & salt in the bowl of a stand mixer.

Pour in the infused milk & mix until the dough is uniform. 

While the mixer is on low add in the butter a couple of pieces at a time. Continue mixing until all butter has been added.

Grease a 27 cm x 12 cm (base measurement) loaf pan. 

Transfer the brioche dough to a lightly oiled piece of baking paper. Oil your hands a little & spread the dough to be a rectangle ~50 cm x 30 cm. Spread the filling on top & sprinkle with poppy seeds.

Starting from one of the long sides roll up into a log. The first bit is the hardest - use the baking paper to start the roll & then peel the baking paper off. When it is rolled into a log wrap the baking paper around it, transfer to a baking tray & put it in the fridge for 30 mins. Putting the dough into the fridge firms it up a little & makes it easier to cut in half & twist the pieces together. 

Bring the log out of the fridge & unwrap it. Leave the baking paper underneath. Cut the log in half lengthways. With the cut sides up, criss cross the halves over each other to create a twist effect. 

Place in the prepared loaf pan (this can be a little messy). I picked up the baking paper & "poured" the start of the log into one end of the loaf pan tucking the start under the next bit of log. The rest sort of "plopped" in & I tucked the other end underneath.

Cover & put in a warm moist place for ~45 mins to prove.

Preheat oven to 160 C (fan forced).

Bake for ~50 - 55 mins.

While the brioche is baking make the glaze. Put the sugar & tea in a small dish, cover with the boiling water. Stir the mixture until the sugar dissolves. 

Bring the brioche out of the oven & brush the top of the loaf with the sugar syrup. Set aside in the pan for ~15 mins.

Serve warm & enjoy!