Thursday, 12 June 2014

Conchas de Colores Naturales - Baking Eggless (May Challenge)

Is it already June 2014? It just seems like yesterday when we welcomed the new year... Phew! time flies, literally and I have missed 3 challenges... Sorry but work at office has been keeping me away from the blogosphere for the last 3-4 months. So when things eased out a little, I decided I will not skip this month's challenge and here it is :)

I admit it, it is a exasperating recipe. Too many different things come together for this, each with its own preparation time and rising time... But it is totally worth it...

Here is the original recipe... I have given the substitution tips below the original recipe.

Yields 16 rolls

Mix and ferment sponge: 2 hours

Mix final dough: 10 minutes

First fermentation : 30 minutes, then 8 – 16 hours in the refrigerator

Divide and shape: 20 minutes

Proof: 3 hours

Bake: 20 minutes

Sponge Ingredients:
113 g flour
3 g instant yeast
1 T. warm water
50 g (one large) egg, lightly beaten

Final Dough Ingredients:
450 g flour
180 g sugar
3 g (1/2 t. salt)
45 g unsalted butter, softened

220 g egg
57 g warm water
7 g instant yeast
all of the sponge

Topping Ingredients:
114 g all-purpose flour
114 g powdered sugar
91 g unsalted butter, at room temperature

Colors/flavors as desired. The original recipe specifies, 2 T. cocoa powder for half, and 1 T. cinnamon for the other half. I divided the dough in quarters and used 1 T. coarsely ground cacao nibs, 3 g dehydrated raspberries, 3 g dehydrated blueberries (both berries finely ground in a spice mill with a bit of granulated sugar), and 1.5 t. acai powder.

What did I use? 1 Tbsp Cinnamon for the brown ones
1 Tbsp dried cranberries for the light pink hue. 

In a medium, combine the sponge ingredients and mix until well incorporated. 
Cover and ferment until double in bulk, about 1.5 hours.
In the bowl of a stand mixer with a dough hook, combine all of the final dough ingredients except 60 g of the sugar. 
Mix on medium-high speed (I used Kitchen Aid mixer speed 5) for 5 minutes.
Add the remaining sugar and continue to mix for another 3 minutes, until the dough more or less holds together around the dough hook. It should be soft and sticky and shiny.
Using a little flour around the sides of the bowl to help loosen the dough, turn the dough into a lightly buttered container. 
Cover and ferment in a warm place for 30 minutes, then place in the refrigerator overnight (8 – 16 hours).
Before removing the dough from the refrigerator, prepare the topping. 
Sift flour and powdered sugar together, then cut the butter into the mixture and work it together into a paste with your fingers. 
Divide the paste and add the colorings.
Turn the main dough into a lightly floured counter. Divide it into 16 pieces of approximately 60 grams each.
Shape each piece into a ball by cupping your hand over it loosely and rolling it around on the counter. 
Place the balls on two large parchment-lined baking sheets.
Divide the topping paste into 16 balls. Press each ball out into a 3-inch disc and place it on top of a ball of dough, using the palm of your hand to flatten it out a little.
Using the tip of a sharp knife, score through the topping paste in a shell pattern. (Don’t worry if the topping disc cracks at this point, or during baking; this is characteristic of conchas.)
Proof  in a warm place, uncovered, until they have increased in volume by about 50%, about 3 hours.
Meanwhile, preheat the oven, with racks on the middle and top thirds, to 375F.
Bake for the conchas for about 20 minutes, swapping the positions of the pans at about 12 minutes to ensure even baking. 
The topping should feel set and the rolls underneath should be slightly browned.
Cool on a wire rack. 
Now for the eggless recipe: 220g egg is about 4 large eggs (each egg is about 55 grams in weight and 1/4 cup by volume).

The eggs can be substituted with any of the following

1. 1 cup milk
2. 1 cup yoghurt
3. 1/2 cup cream + 1/2 cup milk
4. 1/2 cup dry evaporated milk + enough milk to make 1 cup in total

I used option 4. 

Why are there large cracks you ask? I delayed making the shell pattern by more than 20 minutes after fixing the topping. By then the bread had risen again and started cracking the topping paste.

I baked at 180 degrees C for about 20 minutes. Since I baked in a convection oven, I did not have to rearrange the buns midway. 

  • Verdict
  • I am sure the topping would have turned out picture perfect if the pattern was done on time. If you love to serve some fancy looking sweet buns say at a party or a get-together make mini version of these and they will be gone in a jiffy.
    priya's signature image at photobucket

    No comments: