Orange and Mint Bundt Bread #BundtBakers09:00
We take turns hosting each month and choosing the theme/ingredient.
If you are a food blogger and would like to join us, just send Stacy an email with your blog URL to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Laura from the lovely The Spiced Life was our host in December and her request this month was for us to bake with mint. I almost didn't participate. I was constantly between my daily "creative mess routine" and the question of what to bake. Nothing apart from chocolate mint came to mind, like it was the only combination that's ever existed, which would be fine if the chocolate mint combination wasn't my Marmite! I was torched for weeks and at the end the time to come up with something and make it ready for the deadline was almost gone. I was about to leave the message for the rest of the group that I will be sitting this theme out when I decided to search the internet for a tiny spark of inspiration one more time.
I am so happy I did. I found a recipe for a sweet enriched dough that would be normally shaped into a loaf and have a lovely shiny egg yolk glaze on the top, but I decided to adapted it and sacrifice that polished look for the sake of the taste.
What intrigued me the most was that unusual, but at the same time very appealing, combination of orange zest, orange syrup (or liqueur) and mint infused milk. I've never baked with infused milk before and I was more then pleased with the result although I would use a tad more mint next time as it wasn't coming through enough, mainly because I was cautious and put only 2-3 stems. One more would be perfect for this amount of dough .
Although it contains butter and tastes similar to brioche, it has the texture of bread with the orange flavours seemingly coming from the centre, while the crust gave it a light minty after-taste .
Unusually, it tasted better the day after and I must say that a toasted slice of this bread/brioche with a bit of a butter and a spoon of orange marmalade was the best new tried breakfast I have had in a while.
Orange and Mint Bundt Bread
140 ml milk
8 gr fresh yeast or 1/2 package of active dry yeast
240 g flour
60 g softened butter
2 tbsp sugar
1 tsp salt
1 orange zest
1 tbsp of concentrated orange syrup, or liqueur
small bunch of mint
To infuse milk bring milk and 1 bunch of mint ( you can use more or less) to simmer in a small saucepan, then remove from heat and let stand, covered for 1 hour. Discard mint and reheat to be warm and use to dissolve yeast.
Dissolve yeast, add a spoonful of flour and a pinch of sugar, let it rise. If you are using standing mixer with a hook attachment combine the flour, sugar, salt and beaten egg, add the yeast mixture, then slowly a piece at a time mix the butter in. Add the orange at the end. Keep mixing until you get a smooth playable dough. If you are kneading by hand, rub the butter into the flour first.
Leave it to rest until at least doubled in size (up to 2 hours), deflate the dough, knead for a minute or two, then shape it. I used standard bundt cake pan (6 cup), although a smaller size could have been more appropriate.
Cover and place in a warm place; let rise again until doubled, almost tripled in size. Preheat the oven to 200 C, place the bunt and then lower it to 180C (fan oven)/350F. Bake for about half an hour or until golden brown in colour.
When almost done, beat an egg white, brush it over the bread and sprinkle with sugar, return to the oven for a few minutes. Take it out and let it rest in the tin for 5 minutes then turn to the cooling wrack, until completely cooled down.
For the decoration you can make some crystallized mint leaves; but wash the individual leaves, then pat them dry. Place them on a baking paper and brush both sides with beaten egg white, then sprinkle heavily with caster sugar. Leave to dry for at least 3 hours.
And don’t forget to take a peek at what other talented bakers have baked this month: