BBA Challenge #27: Portuguese Sweet Bread

I LOVE THIS BREAD. I LOVE THIS BREAD. Did you hear me? I absolutely LOVE this  Portuguese Sweet Bread! As one of the few Germans (if not the only one; Daniel, do yo consider yourself German because you live here?) among the BBA Challenge bakers, I didn’t know at all what to expect. Peter Reinhart was talking about Hawaiian bread, other BBA bakers referred to some weird orange and brown wrappers – still, I had NO clue what this bread would be like!

This bread is a 1-day bread. First, you make a sponge and let it ferment for 60-90 minutes. Then you combine the sugar, salt, powdered milk (with the BBA Challenge I’m learning something new almost every day – I didn’t know that there was something like powdered milk in Germany, but there definitely is – I chose full-fat powdered milk), butter and shortening (I replaced the shortening with butter, though). You cream everything together, then you add the eggs and extracts (vanilla, orange and lemon – yes, my mail order has finally arrived). You mix in the sponge and the flour and add water to make a very soft dough. Oh yes, it was VERY soft!

I proofed the dough for 2 hours and then divided it into 2 pieces. One of the pieces I formed into a boule and placed in a 9-inch pan. But it looked really weird. Too weird! How was that little piece of dough supposed to fill the whole pan after 2 hours? This would NEVER EVER happen. Unfortunately, I didn’t take a picture of the tiny boule in the giant pan ;-(. I was uncertain. What if the dough would flatten? I didn’t want to have a really flat bread that would be all dry and crunchy. So I removed it from the 9-inch pan and placed it in a 6-inch pan. That looked MUCH better.

The second piece of dough was divided into 10 equal tiny pieces, formed into rolls (my kids love rolls) and placed in my muffin pan. I proofed everything for 3 hours, brushed the boule and the rolls with egg wah and baked them – the rolls for about 20 minutes, the boule for 50 minutes.

This bread was absolutely AWESOME. A beautiful shiny crust, a soft and moist crumb, sweet and a tiny hint of what I later identified as the citrus extracts. Toasted, it was even better! Yummy – scrumptious – delicious – tasty – mouth-watering (these are all English expressions I could think of, are there more?)! So, get your baking utensils and get started! Ready, set, go!

15 responses to “BBA Challenge #27: Portuguese Sweet Bread

  1. Those mini ones are adorable! Wonderful crumb.

  2. Your bread looks delicious! I, too, LOVED this bread. I have been pleasantly surprised by how good the addition of citrus extracts to bread can be.

  3. Heard you loud and clear! I’m going to hop to it and make this bread (into rolls, thanks to you) very soon!

  4. This one seems to be getting so many good reviews; I can’t wait to try it! Like Frieda, I will definitely be copying your muffin/roll trick. Love this bread with artichoke dip . . . .

  5. Another stop when you visit me in Boston–we will have to visit one of the Portuguese bakeries in the area!!

  6. This one is definitely a keeper! I liked it as well. I love the roll idea!

  7. I love the rolls in the muffin tin…. great idea!

  8. The muffins are so cute, and the crumb looks wonderful too. Glad you love it.:)

  9. Just gorgeous!! I can practically smell them. Congratulations. You’re making me want to try that recipe next…

  10. @all: Thanks for all the compliments! I feel flattered :blush:

  11. Your bread looks beautiful – Love the rolls! Great idea. I LOVED this one, too. I’ve already made it again. 🙂

  12. Mmmmm Portuguese sweet bread. My mom used to make this for Christmas and Easter. On Easter we would get to decorate the dough with linguiça (the most divine sausage) and dyed eggs to make it extra special.

  13. So glad you liked this bread! This was a favorite of mine in my college days, but forgot it existed since I left.

    I do consider myself a bit German, though whenever I travel outside of Berlin, I remember just how non-German I am. Hilarious about the powdered milk- I had to ask my co-workers because I didn’t know I could get it here. It was tucked away in the coffee aisle at Kaufland.

    Mine was hard on the top, but much darker than yours. The idea with the muffin tin is awesome. I’m going to have to make it again.

  14. I am making this bread today and am going to try your roll in the muffin pan trick… Thanks!

  15. I want to take this opportunity for your comments on my blog and I thank you for your support.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s