Thursday, January 08, 2015

Epiphany

A Brioche Recipe


Some of you might remember that I explained last year that in Northern France, it's traditional to eat "galette" for the Twelfth Night or Wise Men Day or Epiphany. It's puff pastry filled with a very rich almond cream... And I don't like it that much.


Je crois vous avoir dit l'année dernière que je n'étais pas la plus grande fan de la galette des rois. Je fais donc plutôt des brioches pour l'Epiphanie.

So I usually bake a brioche as is traditional in Southern France.


This year, I brought back from my grand-mother's some pralines: they are almonds covered in a red cooked sugar. So I used those in my brioche, but I used my usual recipe, so you can substitue the pralines with almonds, nuts, candied fruits, sultanas, chocolate chips, or anything you want, really - not bacon, maybe...

Cette année, j'ai ramené des pralines de ma visite chez ma grand-mère et j'ai décidé de les utiliser dans ma brioche, mais vous pouvez les remplacer par des amandes, des raisins, des pépites de chocolat, tout ce qui vous passe par la tête - enfin avec des endives, ça ne doit pas être terrible tout de même!


Note: this is my own simplified recipe... You can go visit Mercotte, the most famous French food blogger if you want a truer recipe... but there's way too much butter for me in this one!


Remarque: ceci est ma propre recette simplifiée... Vous pouvez toujours rendre visite à Mercotte si vous aimez les recettes authentiques et plus beurrées! 


Ingredients you'll need:
  • dry baker's yeast,
  • 2 tablespoons of lukewarm water,
  • 2/3 cup of milk,
  • 60 g (about 2 ounces) of butter (either use salted butter or add a pinch of salt or two),
  •  2 cups of flour and 1/2 to 2/3 cup of flour aside,
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten,
  • 2/3 cup of pralines or whatever you decide to add!

Ingrédients nécessaires:
  • levure boulangère,
  • 2 cuillerées à soupe d'eau tiède,
  • 2/3 de tasse de lait,
  • 60 g de beurre,
  • 2 tasses de farine + une tasse à part,
  • 1 œuf, légèrement battu,
  • une grosse poignée de pralines ou de ce que vous voulez.
What you'll do...It takes time, but it's easy.

1. Put the dry yeast in a bowl, add half a spoon of sugar and 2 tablespoons of lukewarm water... If the water is too hot, you'll kill the yeast, if it's too cold, it won't activate the yeast... It's the only difficult part of the recipe. Cover the bowl with the kind of plastic paper that drives you crazy when you want to unroll it and put it in a warm place (I put it on a stool in front of my kitchen radiator) for about 5 minutes.


1. Mettez la levure dans un bol, ajoutez la moitié d'une cuillerée à soupe de sucre et 2 cuillerées d'eau tiède: pas trop chaude, sinon vous tuez instantanément les petites levures... Mettez de côté pendant quelques minutes (chez moi, c'est sur le tabouret près du radiateur de la cuisine).


2. Pour yourself a drink of your choice and five minutes later, check on your yeast. It should be a little foamy: if it's not, redo the yeast mix (otherwise you won't be able to eat your brioche). If it's foamy, go for the next step.

2. Au bout de quelques minutes, cela doit être "mousseux".


3. In a saucepan, heat the milk in which you add the butter and the remaining sugar (one tablespoon and a half), just until the butter melt. 


3. Dans une casserole, chauffez le lait, le beurre et le sucre restant jusqu'à ce que le beurre fonde juste.


4. In a bowl, pour two cups of flour, add the yeast mix, the egg and the milk mix. It'll make a disusting mixture, but add some of the remaining flour and then put on your countertop. Begin kneading and add some of the remaining flour if needed until you have a nice dough.


4. Dans un saladier, versez deux tasses de farine, ajoutez le mélange de levure, l’œuf battu et le mélange de lait. Cela donne un aspect peu sympathique, mais rajoutez une peu de la farine restante et cela devrait aller mieux! Puis, pétrissez le mélange sur votre plan de travail, en rajoutant un peu de la farine qui vous reste si besoin jusqu'à avoir une pâte lisse.


5. Set your dough aside in a greased bowl, cover with cellophane and leave it to grow for an hour (again, it goes on my stool next to the radiator). 


5. Mettez la pâte dans un saladier graissé, recouvrez de cellophane et laissez gonfler pendant une heure (retour sur le tabouret chez moi).


6. During that hour, you can do whatever you want, but take some time to prepare what you're going to add to your brioche. Since pralines are very tough, my preparation included a hammer and going outside in the rain, because there was no way I was using a hammer on my new countertop!


6. Pendant cette heure, vous pouvez faire ce que vous voulez, mais prenez le temps de préparer votre garniture, ce qui chez moi a nécessité un marteau et une sortie sous la pluie (hors de question d'utiliser le marteau sur mon plan de travail)!

7. An hour later, check your dough, it should have doubled. Punch it violently to get the air out (I just love that part) and then knead gently while adding the crunched pralines/whatever. As is traditional for Epiphany, I also added a charm to my dough. Create a round shape. I put mine in a pan on a baking paper, but the pan isn't necessary. Put aside for an other three quarters of an hour to grow.


7. Une heure plus tard, vérifiez votre pâte qui doit avoir doublé (plus ou moins). Un bon coup de poing pour en chasser l'air (en plus, c'est libérateur), puis pétrissez-la un peu pour incorporer votre garniture. C'est le moment de rajouter une fève si vous le voulez. Formez une boule. Moi, je mets la mienne sur du papier sulfurisé dans un moule, ce n'est pas obligatoire. Laissez à nouveau lever pendant trois quarts d'heure. 


8. Then bake for 20 to 25 minutes in an oven preheated at about 350°F.

8. Ensuite enfournez à 180°C pour 20 à 25 minutes.


9. Enjoy with a good cup of tea.


9. Appréciez avec une bonne tasse de thé.


I also had an other kind of epiphany today... I tend to complain about the inorganisation of my life: two schools, so I tend to forget my binders and stuff in one school or an other, a cottage always under renovation, a shop that has major problems since the French Post changed everything on January the 1st... But today, as I was chatting with a colleague who has a perfectly organised life, it hit me... I don't want that kind of life: I love my messy life!


Aujourd'hui, j'ai aussi eu une illumination (ça se dit aussi "epiphany" en anglais, juste pour vous dire que cela a un rapport avec le reste)... Je me plains tout le temps de l'inorganisation de ma vie: je travaille dans deux collèges et j'oublie toujours quelque chose dans l'un ou l'autre, mon Cottage est en travaux perpétuellement, ma boutique est comme "éventrée" depuis les nouveaux tarifs de la Poste... Et puis, en discutant avec un collègue dont j'admire la vie très organisée, ça m'est tombé dessus d'un coup: je ne veux pas de cette vie-là, j'adore mon petit bazar!


See you soon,

A bientôt,



PS: This post has been written during the weekend and scheduled for today. I didn't delete it, because I know life has to go on, but I'm sure you understand I spent yesterday evening crying watching the news on TV. This is not a political blog, nor a philosophical one, but can I just ask you to think of those words written in the 18th century by Beaumarchais...


Cet article a été écrit en avance... Jamais je n'aurai eu l'idée ni le courage d'écrire cela hier soir... Ceci n'est pas un blog politique, ni un blog philosophique, et je vais donc être brève. J'ai toujours pensé que l'histoire ne progressait pas... C'est donc en plein XVIIIe siècle, sous la plume de Beaumarchais, que je trouve le plus bel hommage aux disparus d'hier (eh, oui, dans Le Mariage de Figaro, car l'ironie, elle, ne meurt jamais).



55 comments:

  1. I don't know if I have ever tried this bread. It is very different. We usually celebrate, because my mother always did. xoox

    True.

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  2. Well in your 'messy' life you still managed to celebrate the Epiphany and blog about it which was more than I managed!
    What happened was just horrific, my thoughts are with you all, the victims and their families.

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  3. Oh Magali, la brioche, c'est le meilleur pain DU MONDE! Je le prépare aussi, soigneusement! C'est pas facile à obtenir un bon brioche sans être consciente du température du four!!!!

    Joli, délicieux, parfait. Anita

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  4. I truly enjoy your blog. You and your country are in my prayers.

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  5. I was so shocked to hear about that. What a horrible thing to have happen. Sending prayers xox

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  6. We celebrate the Epiphany in Portugal as well. I love the quote; so true.

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    Replies
    1. The quote is one I go back to very often... It has inspired me so often.

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  7. merci Magali , pour la recette de cette brioche de l'Épiphanie (j'ai découvert de nombreuses recettes aux pralines l'an dernier en découvrant Lyon, et je me suis régalée !!)
    et merci pour cette phrase de Figaro que j'ai recopié sur le tableau pour mes élèves ce matin , ils sont très sensibilisés à ces évènements
    et vive sa propre organisation ( je suis un peu dans la même tournure d'esprit que toi , bazar permanent mais toujours envie de perfection, et ne jamais y parvenir... surement parce que j'ai besoin de cet environnement pour me sentir bien, malgré tout )

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    Replies
    1. J'ai utilisé cette citation moi aussi pour mes élèves... Elle m'accompagne depuis tant d'années, c'est comme un doudou rassurant. Il a été difficile parfois de réponde à leurs questions tout en évitant toute idée "pré-pensée", ce à quoi je tenais car cela me semble le meilleur hommage.

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  8. We also celebrated Epiphany (not knowing of what happened) with the children, and in our pastry a small stone king is hidden, so the childs who finds the king in his piece of cake, is the King for the rest of the day... so far so good, en then we turned on the news at 1 o'clock... We spent the rest of the afternoon in shock! Not only is Paris only a few hours drive from our home, and Brussels seemed to be "the next stop" in the eyes of some frightened children...It is all too sad for words to describe!! Will we ever see peace and friendship throughout the world??? We also cried... Marcy

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    Replies
    1. I only discovered the news in the early afternoon as well... Now, I can't seem to be able to turn the TV off, still hoping somehow that at some point they'll say it isn't true...

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  9. Dear Magali,
    I am not familiar with this bread.. it looks scrumptious! I must try it one day...Thank you so much for sharing.
    I was shocked to hear of the news.. Keeping you and your country in my prayers.
    blessings,
    Penny

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  10. Thank you for the addition. Thank you for acknowledging the massacre in Paris, yesterday. I can not comment on any blogs today, which do not do so, in some way.

    Yes, life must go on. Because to allow Radical Islamists to completely change our way of life, is to let them win, a bit.

    But ... Today.... Not having anything composed already, I couldn't just go on, as usual...

    Courage!
    Tessa~

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  11. A horrible act of cowardism! My heart goes out to the people of France. Love your bread recipe Magali, but mostly I love pralines. Messy is much more exciting!

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  12. Messy is creative......too much orderliness is a lack of imagination.....

    Love the bread......I will make something similar for Easter.

    The quote is so very true!!! So sad of the massacre.......we all suffer with you......we cannot go on like this.......be strong....

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    Replies
    1. I think the sad event made us strong, by some twist of fate that killers hadn't foreseen.

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  13. Dear Magali,
    we are all shocked. I blogged about Je Suis Charlie too! http://ariadnefromgreece.blogspot.gr/2015/01/je-suis-charlie.html
    Anyway the recipe is very good! One day take a photo of your little lucky toys you put inside and show us. AriadnefromGreece

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  14. You and your country are in my prayers. Will we ever be safe in what we do....

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  15. Trop bon, mais les pralines même san la brioche autour, je prends, je me cache dans un coin & je mange tout.
    Caresses aux poilus griffus. Bises. Babette

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  16. If I spend too much time being organized I have no energy left over for the things I want to do. Organization should free you up and give you more time to do other things but I know people who are slaves to being organized. Like you I don't mind being slightly unorganized.
    I am so sorry for the lost you and your country are suffering today and you are in my prayers. I like that you are carrying on in the face of this terrorism, they want us to be paralyzed with fear and to change our lives.
    Take care, Traci

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    Replies
    1. "Not afraid", I say while crying all the tears I have.

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  17. This looks like a wonderful recipe to make on a cold winter day - thank you for sharing! I think I agree with you about being organized - it seems to take too much time when I would rather be creating a mess cooking or sewing or painting something. Every once in a while I put things in some sort of order...enough to make me happy!
    We here in Washington State are in solidarity with you in France and feel such sorrow for what has happened. Your country is full of brave and inspiring people who stand united for freedom. If we do not stand up to defend our freedoms, what are we left with? Sending positive thoughts and prayers for your country and admiration of your stand against terror. xo Karen

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  18. I am having an epiphany supper for different reasons on Saturday, I just posted about it...ha! I am like you...organized lives seem and sound somewhat boring at times?
    And, of course, I have to say, "je suis Charlie" is a movement that has brought people together across the world to speak out against this horrific act of violence. I feel sick about this but so proud that people are coming together to speak out.

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  19. Epiphany is what some of my friends celebrate. I'm sure they would love this and of course with tea. I'm very sorry about what happened with your countrymen. They spoke out regardless, very brave. That is what the editor said. A voice that can be heard. Let freedom of speech ring! Kathleen in Az USA

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    Replies
    1. Dreadful day today... I'll remember that my whole life... You never know how much you cherish freedom until it's threatened.

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  20. My prayers are with you all in France, it is such a senseless, horrible , sad thing to happen. I am in Sydney where only a few
    weeks ago we had an incident. Keep strong and let us all try to not let these people win.
    Blessings
    Carol from Australia

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    Replies
    1. Carol,
      I remember following the Sydney hostage situation on TV. We lived the same thing today and it was dreadful.

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  21. Your brioche is lovely, Magali. I'm very sorry about what happened in your country. I pray that the authorities will apprehend the murderers and bring them to justice. So sad.

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  22. What a tragedy has hit your beautiful country. The world is facing terrorists like never before and I'm afraid to think it's will only get worse. It does seem like you have a strong leader unlike our country. What a wonderful recipe you shared and I so wanted to grab a piece. Take care, sleep well, and prayers for your and France, the United States great allies!

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  23. Thinking of your, dear Magali... My heart goes out to you and your country.

    Your recipe looks amazing! I have never had anything like it and may have to try my hand at making it - thank you for sharing. Sending love and hugs your way!

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  24. Yum, Yum! I bet the pralines mad it amazing! I have never tried making a Brioche, but it sure looks scrumptious!
    hugs,
    Jann

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  25. That looks like a wonderful treat! I'll bet your cottage smelled very, very good while the brioche was baking!

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  26. Yesterday was a day that leaves me in silence. Prayers and a heart desire for peace increased. Your Brioche looks like too much work for me. I am going to bake a vanilla cake and too with strawberries instead. xxo

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  27. Essai depuis mon téléphone. Pour une copine ça a marché.
    Ta brioche sent bon hum....
    Je comprends que ça ne doit pas être facile à expliquer aux jeunes.
    Bises.

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  28. There is nothing on the news except the story unfolding in France. I can't quite believe it's going on and on and that there are those in the world who are intent on murdering the innocent. My thoughts are with you Magali x

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  29. I am still in utter disbelief and shock about what happend Magali, It is just simply horrible and senseless! I hope this ordeal ends soon so that your country and the rest of the world can start healing again.... your brioche looks so delectable by the way.

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  30. I have a hard time watching all the terrible things happening around the world and I just don't understand the senseless violence that is everywhere. My thoughts are with you during this terrible time, Magali.

    Your brioche looks delicious and I like the idea of placing a charm inside. Take care.
    Vickie

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  31. Bonjour ! Comme pour prendre une bouffée d'air frais, je viens sur votre blog après avoir passé trois jours sur les sites d'actualité... Merci pour la recette et la citation ! Bon week-end ! Flopsy

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  32. Dear Magali,
    It is my greatest wish that one day these horrific acts will no longer be... My heart is with you and all in France.
    Thank you so much for coming over for a visit...
    blessings,
    Penny

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  33. Dear Magali, I've have watched the news with horror at what your country is going through. My thoughts and prayers for all the people of France!
    Your broiche looks delicious and so pretty, I sure had a chuckle when you took the hammer outside! I wouldn't use it on those new countertops either...........
    Hugs

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  34. It is so sad when evil appears in our lives.

    My thoughts are with you and all of France.

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  35. Thoughts and prayers are with you and the people of France. Your quote is perfect.

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  36. PS-with regard to your brioche, I was interested to see what pralines are where you are. Where I grew up (in the deep south of the United States, about half an hour from the state of Louisiana) pralines are a sort of creamy, chewy candy about the size of a cookie, and filled with pecans held together with a soft brown sugar type confection. So interesting the difference, no? Both delicious, no doubt. Your brioche sounds delicious, if I was not trying so hard to loose wt. I would make some! Best wishes and prayers to you and all yours there, our thoughts are with you.

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  37. Magali,
    I have been following the events on the news and my thoughts and prayers are with you and the people of France. It is so hard to comprehend such senseless acts of violence. It is heartwarming though to see the people of France and those around the world standing in solidarity against these acts.

    Your brioche looks delicious but then I thought the galette with almond filling looked and sounded pretty delicious too. I would like to try both. Thanks for dropping by my blog, I appreciate it very much.

    My thoughts are with you,
    Linda
    mysewwhatblog

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    Replies
    1. Thank you, Linda. For now, we stand united, but for how long?

      Delete
  38. Chère Magali,

    Merci d'être venue chez moi.....je vais continuer à visiter les blogs que j'adore, le vôtre, bien sûr! C'est un nouveau "chapitre" dans ma vie, et je n'oubliera jamais l'histoire de ma vie en "Blogland." Anita

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  39. We were following the dreadful events in your country last week. The hearts and thoughts of all who love and appreciate freedom are, I hope, coming together. We are perhaps waking up to the threat?

    On a lighter note, I have just complained on another blog that, here I am, trying to catch up with what people have been posting, and I keep coming across stuff about yummy food. it's not fair - it's ages until lunchtime and your pictures are making my stomach growl!

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