It’s no secret that the easiest way to get good brioche is by freezing your dough. The problem is that it seems like the more you freeze, the worse it gets and the harder it is to get good brioche again.
To tackle this, here are some things you can do to keep your frozen brioche as fresh as possible and ensure that every time you thaw your dough, it comes out as perfect as possible.
Freeze your dough at the very last minute
The majority of brioche recipes call for you to let your dough sit out at room temperature for a number of hours before you roll it out and bake it. Why? Because the dough is at its coldest when it’s at room temperature.
But if you put it in the freezer for a few hours before you use it, it’ll be at its coldest when you’re ready to start baking, so there’s less risk of it being too soft when you’re ready to use it.
This can also extend the life of your frozen brioche, as it can last up to 3 months in the freezer. Freezing your brioche dough is the easiest way to ensure fresh brioche.
You don’t have to thaw it first, because now when you want a brioche, all you have to do is scoop it out of the freezer, let it thaw for a few hours, and then bake it. And because it’s already frozen, you don’t have to worry about it getting too warm and soft.
Defrost your brioche overnight
You can also defrost your brioche overnight at room temperature and dry it out a bit before you re-freeze it. This will both extend the life of your frozen brioche, but it’s also much easier to work with.
You don’t have to worry about it being too cold when you try to roll it out, and you can avoid the risk of it being too soft. To defrost your dough overnight at room temperature, carefully unwrap your dough and let it sit out at room temperature for a few hours, until it’s at its coldest.
Then, wrap it back up in plastic wrap and put it back in the freezer. When you’re ready to re-thaw it and bake it right away, let it sit out at room temperature for 5 hours, until it’s at room temperature.
And while brioche is meant to be baked the same day you make it, if you have the time, defrost it overnight and then re-defrost it in the morning, let it sit out at room temperature for a few hours, then wrap it back up in plastic and put it back in the freezer.
This will give you a couple of days of fresh brioche that you don’t have to worry about being too soft or getting too warm when you try to bake it.
Wrap your brioche in plastic wrap when it’s still frozen
Another way to keep your brioche as fresh as possible is by wrapping it in plastic wrap as soon as you notice that it’s starting to thaw. When it’s still frozen, it doesn’t lose as much moisture as when it’s already starting to thaw.
So if you can wrap it right away, it’ll be much less likely to get too soft when you try to bake it. Whether you wrap it while it’s still frozen, or after it’s already started to thaw, it’s important to keep in mind that the wrap needs to be quite thick.
Just use a normal plastic wrap or a few layers of foil and make sure it’s covering the brioche loosely so it can breathe. If you use a lot of plastic wrap, your brioche might get too dry, and that’s exactly what you don’t want to happen.
Use a humidity tent while you bake your brioche
Another thing you can do to keep your brioche fresh is to use a humidity tent while you’re baking your brioche. This can be done with a simple bowl or a small bag. Simply put some water in the bowl and let it sit out at room temperature.
This will create a humid environment that will keep your brioche from getting too dry. And if you put it in the bag, it’ll be able to breathe just like it would in the bowl, so it won’t get too soggy. Make sure you keep the tent right over your brioche while you’re baking it, and if you don’t mind a little extra work, it can help ensure a fresher brioche.
It’s best to use a humidity tent if you can while you’re baking your brioche the day you make it, rather than waiting until the next day, because the more time that the dough spends out at room temperature, the more it loses moisture.
Don’t Overbake Your Brioche
Brioche is meant to be baked at a higher temperature, but you don’t want to be too hot, either. Too hot and you’ll bake the outside of the brioche before the inside is done, and that’s not good. Baking your brioche at too high a temperature can also result in a gummy brioche, where the butter separates from the dough, rather than being mixed in.
There is a sweet spot, though, where the brioche is still golden and doesn’t taste burnt but is fully cooked. This is when you’re baking your brioche at a temperature that’s not too hot, so it doesn’t get gummy.
Brioche is the king of bread, and it doesn’t need to be tricky to get the perfect texture and rise. It just needs to be cold, wrapped in a plastic bag, and then put back in the freezer. That’s it! You can also try some of these tricks to make sure your brioche is as fresh as possible.
First, don’t defrost your dough at room temperature. Instead, let it sit in the refrigerator overnight. Second, don’t let your dough sit out at room temperature for more than a few hours. If you do, you’ll be too warm when you try to roll it out and the dough will end up being too soft.
Finally, don’t try to make brioche in the evening and then bake it in the morning. It needs time to chill in the refrigerator while it’s cold, and then it needs to be baked at a high enough temperature so it doesn’t get gummy.