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4.5 from 2 votes

HOKKAIDO MILK BREAD

The softest bread EVER: Japanese Hokkaido milk bread using a touch of condensed milk!
Course Bread, Dinner, lunch, Side
Cuisine Asian
Keyword Bread, Buns, Milk
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Rising time 1 hour 45 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 35 minutes
Servings 1 loaf (or 8 buns)

Ingredients

Recipe for one loaf (9 cm x 21 cm loaf pan) - or 8 buns

    For the Tangzhong (water roux):

    • 25 gr Bread flour
    • 100 gr Water

    For the bread:

    • 320 gr Bread flour
    • 30 gr Brown sugar
    • 5 gr Salt
    • 5 gr Dry yeast
    • 120 gr Warm milk (at 35-40° Celsius)
    • 5 gr Condensed milk (or milk powder)
    • Half Beaten egg (25 gr)
    • 25 gr High quality butter (softened, not melted)

    To brush the top:

    • Milk
    • Half Beaten Egg

    Instructions

    For the Tangzhong (water roux):

    • In a pan, combine water and flour and whisk. Then place it over medium-low heat on the stove and keep whisking with a spatula, until you get a thick gel-consistency mixture (and it reaches 65°C which is 150°F)
    • Pour it onto a plate, cover with plastic wrap and let it cool at room temperature.

    For the bread:

    • (I use a bread machine, but you can also use a stand mixer)
    • Into the bread machine's bowl, combine flour, sugar, salt and activate. Then add yeast and warm milk  (ideally at 35-40° C / 95°-104°F).
    • Gradually add the beaten egg, condensed milk (or powdered), Tangzhong and let everything incorporate.
    • Add the softened butter and let knead for about 20 minutes. 
    • Place the dough into a bowl and cover with plastic wrap, let it rise for 50 minutes in a warm place.
    • After the dough has doubled in size, gently press it to degas it.
      Divide it into 3 equal pieces and roll them into balls (like this). Cover and let them rise for 15 minutes.
      Want to make buns? Divide it into 8 balls, let rise for 45 minutes.
    • After 15 minutes, take the 3 balls and roll them like Umi does in this video (it's easier for you to watch this rather than reading how to do it!) - click here.
    • Put the balls into a loaf pan (grease it if necessary. I used a paper pan like this so I didn't grease it) and let rise for 40 minutes.
    • Preheat the oven at 180°C (350°F).
    • Combine milk and egg, then brush the your bread and bake for about 20 minutes or until it gets puffy, and golden brown.
    • As soon as you take it out of the oven, brush it with more milk.
    • Let it cool down onto a cooling rack.
    • This bread surprisingly lasted a few days and it was so good after 5 days! Store it in an airtight container.

    Notes

    ** Recipe adapted from Umi's Baking recipe. Check out his recipe for a milk powder version.
    WANT TO MAKE BUNS? Divide the dough into 8 little balls, instead of making one big loaf. Bake, let cool. Freeze them and then defrost them when you need them.