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    Cinnamon Hot Chocolate and Brioche

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    Cinnamon Hot Chocolate and Brioche

    Makes: 10 brioche Serves: 2

    Ingredients

    • Brioche
    • 340g plain flour
    • 1 heaped teaspoon easy-mix yeast
    • 4 level teaspoons caster sugar
    • ½ level teaspoon salt
    • 3 medium eggs, lightly beaten
    • 115g very soft butter, plus extra melted butter for greasing
    • 1 egg yolk beaten with 2 teaspoons water
    • Cinnamon hot chocolate
    • 115g Valrhona chocolate, grated
    • 565ml whole milk
    • 140ml single cream
    • 1 stick cinnamon, broken

    Method

    1. To make the Hot Chocolate: Pour the milk and cream into a saucepan. Add the cinnamon and set over a low heat. When very hot, but not boiling, whisk in the chocolate. Keep whisking until the chocolate has melted. Remove the cinnamon, pour into 2 deep bowls or cups and serve.
    2. To make the Brioche: Sift 30g of the flour into a small bowl. Mix in the yeast and 4 tablespoons tepid water. Leave until frothy - about 20 minutes.
    3. Place a dough hook in a food processor or mixer. Sift the remaining flour into a bowl and mix in the sugar and salt. Tip into the machine, then add the yeast mixture. Begin mixing, gradually adding the eggs. When you have a smooth, sticky dough, begin to add the softened butter. You will need to regularly stop the machine to scrape the butter into the dough, as it tends to stick to the sides. Keep beating until it forms a glossy, smooth, elastic dough. Scoop into a clean bowl. Cover with clingfilm and leave to rise in a warm place for an hour.
    4. Transfer the mixture to the fridge and leave overnight. This allows the gluten to relax, and the butter to firm up, making the dough more manageable.
    5. The next day, brush 10 small brioche moulds with melted butter. Flour a work surface, then scoop the dough out onto it.
    6. Lightly knead until smooth then cut into 10 pieces. Take each portion and cut off one-sixth of it. Roll the larger pieces into balls and tuck into the moulds. Cut a cross into the top of each, then roll the smaller pieces into balls. Tuck them on top of each larger ball, patting them down a little. Place on a baking tray and loosely cover with a clean cloth. Leave in a warm place until doubled in size (1½ to 2 hours).
    7. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 200°C/gas 6. When the brioche have doubled in size, brush with beaten egg and bake for 12 minutes. Reduce the heat to 180°C/gas mark 4 and bake for a further 8 minutes until they are golden brown and well risen. Tip out of the tins and cool on a rack.

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    Cook's tips

    Brioche need time to rise slowly as they are much richer than ordinary bread. You could make them in advance and freeze while very fresh. The night before they are needed, leave to defrost in the fridge. The next morning, warm in a hot oven.

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    5 stars