In this post, we look at Japanese baking techniques & trade secrets.
Japanese baking is an art form in itself and one that yields some truly delicious results. By using carefully honed techniques and trade secrets, bakers are able to produce unique and tasty loaves, rolls and sweet buns that are impossible to resist. Want to find out how? Continue reading to find out more.
How is Japanese bread so fluffy?
Let’s start with the most important question. Japanese bread is especially fluffy because of the special doughs that are used and the steps that are followed along the way. Unlike most European recipes that produce a hard crust and salty crumb, Japanese bread is soft, springy and usually a little sweet. Check out the list of techniques below:
If you’re after softer and fluffier buns, rolls and even loaves, then Tangzhong is definitely for you. This technique involves cooking a small amount of flour and liquid (milk or water) in a yeast recipe for a short amount of time before adding the resulting thick slurry to your other ingredients. The outcome? The starch in the flour becomes pre-gelatinized, allowing it to absorb a greater amount of water.
The dough is easier to knead and less sticky
Rolls, buns and loaves rise higher
Everything comes out fluffier and maintains moisture for longer
Shokupan is a classic Japanese bread that is popular for many reasons and it’s not hard to see why. With a delightfully light and fluffy centre, and a remarkably bouncy crumb, it truly is Asian baking at it’s finest. Shokupan can be toasted and eaten with a spread of butter or your favourite jam. However, it’s most commonly used as a sandwich bread because of its softness. Trust us when we say that customers will keep coming back for more.
Tips, tricks and secrets:
A Shokupan loaf can be baked in two shapes using either a single pan or a Pullman pan (a bread pan with a cover)
The name ‘Shokupan’ translates as ‘eating bread’
Shokupan can be used to make delicious French toast
The Yudane method is similar to Tangzhong and produces bread that is extra fluffy and soft. Bakers mix boiling water with flour to create a scalding effect, which holds moisture within the bread and helps it to stay delicious for a longer period of time. The texture of this bread is soft and airy, making it a perfect option for sandwiches. You’ll get the best results by refrigerating the dough for 4 hours prior to baking.