|So cool. My daughter made this and I think she did a fabulous job!|
Today November 2nd is Day of the Dead in Mexico, Dia de los Muertes. Since I have been reading, or rather listening to on tape, La Lacuna by Barbara Kingsolver, I felt compelled to make some Mexican bread. Having already made Pan de Muerto last year, I just had to make something different so I can put it on my blog. If we eat things more than once around here, its because its pretty darn good or it is a favorite.
When I lived in Arizona, I bought these conchas many times. When I would go to Mexico, I would make it a point to go to the bakery and buy these. After seeing them on Susan's blog Wild Yeast, I just had to make them. She used some unique flavorings for the topping. I followed suit with one of mine. I bought some freeze dried strawberries and ground them in my coffee grinder. The strawberry flavor did come through. Not real over powering but it did let you know it was there. My favorites were the chocolate and vanilla ones though.
The texture of these conchas inside were really similar to a croissant- very light and airy. We really liked them. Next time I will give them a try doing exactly what she did to see if there is a difference in texture.
Loosely based on Susan's conchas.
4 oz flour
1 tablespoon sugar
1/2 ounce dry yeast
4 ounces water
450 g flour
180 g sugar
3 g (1/2 t. salt)
45 g unsalted butter, softened
220 g egg
57 g warm water
7 g instant yeast
all of the sponge
114 g all-purpose flour
114 g powdered sugar
91 g unsalted butter, at room temperature
chocolate- add two tablespoons coca powder
vanilla- add a teaspoon vanilla or vanilla bead seeds
strawberry- two tablespoons ground dehydrated strawberries
For the Starter: Dissolve yeast in water add 4 oz flour, 1 tablespoon sugar. Mix until a paste forms. Cover with a damp towel. Set aside in a warm place ideally about 70° — until the dough has doubled in volume, about 4 hours (dough will ferment).
For the Dough: In a small bowl, combine the sponge ingredients and mix until well incorporated. Cover and ferment until double in bulk, about 1.5 hours.
In the bowl of a stand mixer with a dough hook, combine all of the final dough ingredients except 60 g of the sugar. Mix on medium-high speed (I used Kitchen Aid mixer speed 5) for 5 minutes.
Add the remaining sugar and continue to mix for another 3 minutes, until the dough more or less holds together around the dough hook. It should be soft and sticky and shiny.
Using a little flour around the sides of the bowl to help loosen the dough, turn the dough into a lightly greased bowl. Cover and proof in a warm place for an hour and a half.
For the Topping: Sift flour and powdered sugar together, then cut the butter into the mixture and work it together into a paste with your fingers. Divide the paste and add the colorings.
Turn the main dough into a lightly floured counter. Divide it into 14 pieces. Gather up the dough balls in your palm and roll to bottom , pinching to close it and form it into a circle. Place the balls on two large parchment-lined baking sheets,seam side down.
Divide the topping paste into 16 balls. Press each ball out into a 3-inch disc and place it on top of a ball of dough, using the palm of your hand to flatten it out a little.
Using the tip of a sharp knife, score through the topping paste in a shell pattern or in concentric circles.
I am submitting these to Yeastspotting. Thank you Susan for making them look so darn appealing.