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INGREDIENTS

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THE BRIOCHE

120g Strong flour

12g Sugar

40g White mother

120g / 120ml Milk (warm)

4 Medium Egg (lightly beaten)

400g Strong flour

8g Salt

20g Sugar

160g Soft Butter (Salted or unsalted)

Extra butter to grease the tin

1 large mixing bowl (+/- 2l capacity)

2 small mixing bowl (+/- 1l capacity)

Pastry brush

1 bread baking tin (400g capacity)

TIMINGS:

Building up the sourdough = 8 hours

Make the Pre-ferment = 4 Hrs

Make the dough = 50 mins

Letting the dough rise = 4 hrs

Knock back and shape the dough = 10 mins

Final proof = 4-6 hrs

 Baking = 35-50 mins

Cooling = 30 mins

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CROQUE MONSIEUR

8 x Slices of brioche

8 x Slices of cooked Ham

Soft butter

Grated Gruyere or Cheddar Cheese

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CHEESE SAUCE

25g butter

35g flour

1 tsp Dijon mustard or Frenchies

200ml milk (Hot)

Little Fresh black pepper

30g grated cheddar

Large pinch sea salt

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CROQUE MONSIEUR

METHOD

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THE BRIOCHE

 

Pre heat the oven to 250C (500F) Gas 9 on fan setting with a deep tray at the bottom

Weigh out the 120g flour and the 12g sugar in a small bowl and set aside

Dissolve the mother in the warm milk, add the above flour mixture to make a paste. Scrape round the edges, cover and leave to ferment in a warm place for about 4 hrs.

In the other bowl, mix 400g White flour, 8g salt and 20g sugar together and set aside

After 4 hours the pre-ferment you have made should be bubbling. If not, leave to ferment for a further hour until it is bubbling.

Add the lightly beaten eggs to the pre-ferment.

Add the flour (dry) mixture into the pre-ferment and mix until it comes together.

The dough will be slightly sticky. Add the soft butter onto the top of the sticky dough and cover the mix with clingfilm or small bowl. Leave to stand for 10 mins, then knead the mix for 10 minutes

Start by squashing the butter into the dough with your knuckles and fingers to incorporate it into the dough.

Lift a portion of the dough up from the side and fold it into the middle and press down your knuckles. The mixture will get stickier as you work the butter into the dough.

Turn the bowl 90° clockwise and lift another portion of the dough up from the side and fold it into the middle and press with your knuckles. Repeat x 10.

Turn the ball of dough over in the bowl and make a finger mark in the dough (to indicate the first knead) and cover. Leave to rest for 10 – 20 mins.

Repeat the kneading another 3 times, mark the dough indicating the amount of kneads done. After the 4 kneads, leave the dough to rise for 4 hours in a warm place, making sure it is covered.

Remove the dough from the bowl and knock it back on a floured work surface, shape it into the desired shape and place the loaf into a tin that has been greased with butter.

Let the loaf rise in a warm place for 4-6 hours making sure it is covered. After 4-6 hours the loaf would have risen almost double in volume. Brush the top lightly with egg yolk wash.

 

 

Place into the oven at 250c (500F) gas 9 in all its forms. Pour a cup of water on the hot tray to create steam and lower to 200c straight away (400F) Gas 6. Bake for +/- 35 – 50 minutes until golden brown. Turn out of its shape and allow to cool on a wire rack.

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CROQUE MONSIEUR

Toast one side of the brioche slices and butter the un-toasted sides. Spread the cheese sauce on 4 x sides of toasted brioche, then lay on the ham, plenty of grated cheese and a little more cheese sauce.

Lay the other slices on top and press down lightly. Slowly pan fry until golden brown on one side on med heat, then turn it over and cook for another 2 mins. Spread with a little more sauce and grated cheese on top and grill the top until golden under a hot grill or place in a hot oven.

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CHEESE SAUCE

Melt the butter in a pan on a low heat, then add the flour and cook out for 5 mins, stirring regularly. Pour in the warm milk little by little into the flour and butter mix, stirring all the time whilst having the heat on low so it’s not so hot.

Add the salt and pepper and bring to a slow simmer. Add the mustard and cheese, simmer slowly for 5 minutes on a low heat, stirring all the time (It should be lump free) Finally pass through a fine sieve.

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