Doesn’t this bread look amazing and gorgeous? It’s actually really easy to make. I have baked it several times, and I get the same amazing flower shape bread every time. That is how easy it is!
Please do remember to use dark color filling like chocolate or red bean paste like I do. The contrast between golden brown bread and dark color filling is what makes the bread pop.
300 g bread flour
165 to 180 g whole milk
1 large egg
20 g butter, soften and diced
30 g sugar
1 teaspoon yeast
1/8 teaspoon salt
Red bean paste filling ingredients:
1/2 cup small red beans (available in Asian grocery store)
5 to 6 tablespoon brown sugar (use more if prefer sweeter taste)
2 to 3 tablespoon butter
3 cups water
Dry red bean and ready to use red bean paste are both available in Asian grocery store. I like to make my own red bean paste from scratch. Sometimes I make a big batch and divide them into small regular portion, pack in Ziploc bags and freeze them. When I need red bean paste for baking or cooking, I can just thaw one portion.
Start with the red bean. Soak the beans for at least two hours or overnight.
Place the beans in a small stock pot; add water to fill the pot about half inch above the beans. Cook over medium heat until the water boils, cover and reduce the heat to simmer for 60 to 90 minutes or until the beans is soft to touch.
Drain the cooked beans. Transfer into a food processor (AMAZON product link). Process the beans on high speed for 30 to 40 seconds into silky smooth red bean paste.
Heat a nonstick pan over medium heat. Add red bean paste, and add butter and brown sugar, 1/3 at a time. Stir constantly to prevent sticking to the bottom and burning. Cook until the paste is very thick. It should have the constancy like pumpkin pie filling, maybe even a little thicker than that.
Get ready to make the dough.
Microwave the milk on high for 20 to 30 seconds. Add to the stand mixer (AMAZON this one) container, along with yeast. Wait for 5 minutes or until the yeast dissolves.
Add egg, flour, sugar and salt. Knead on speed 2 for 12 to 18 minutes. Add soften butter, and knead another 10 to 18 minutes. Kneading time depends on the dough. The dough should pass the window panel test. It means you should be able to stretch a little piece of dough with your fingers into a really thin panel. It can be so thin that you can see through it like a window. That is why people call it window panel test.
Cover the dough. Proof it until double in size. It takes 60 to 90 minutes.
Transfer the dough to a well dusted wooden board. Punch down and knead gently into a ball. Cover and proof it for another 10 minutes.
Divide the dough into four.
Divide the red bean paste into three.
With a rolling pin, roll a piece of dough to a quarter inch in height. Spread the red bean paste evenly onto the top.
Roll out another piece of dough, and place it on top of previous one.
Repeat the process twice.
Now we should have four layers of dough.
With a sharp knife, cut the edge into 16 pedals, leave out the center part.
Twist each pedal towards opposite direction twice.
Seal the edges.
Cover and proof another 30 to 45 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 375 F.
Brush with the top with egg wash. Bake 25 to 30 minutes. Cover with a large piece of foil so that the bread doesn’t get too brown in the oven.
Ta-dah! Now you have a gorgeous bread flower! O(∩_∩)O~
Cool on a cooling rack. Store it in a bread/ plastic bag when bread is lukewarm. Or, you can just eat it up! O(∩_∩)O~