The Pane al latte Recipe This soft, slightly sweet Italian milk bread is perfect for small children—though adults will enjoy it for breakfast or lunch as well!
Rising and proofing time:
2 1⁄2–3 hrs
4 cups all-purpose flour, plus extra for dusting
1 tsp salt
2 tbsp sugar
2 tsp dried yeast
3⁄4 cup warm milk
2 large eggs, plus 1 egg, beaten, for glazing
4 tbsp unsalted butter, melted
vegetable oil, for greasing
1 Put the flour, salt, and sugar into a bowl and mix well. Dissolve the yeast in the milk, whisking to help it dissolve. Once the liquid has cooled, add the eggs and beat well.
2 Gradually pour the milk mixture, then the butter, into the flour mixture, stirring it to form a soft dough. Knead the dough for 10 minutes on a floured work surface, until smooth, glossy, and elastic.
3 Put the dough in a lightly oiled bowl, cover loosely with plastic wrap, and leave to rise in a warm place for up to 2 hours, until doubled in size. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and gently knock it back. Divide it into 5 roughly equal pieces. Ideally, 2 should be slightly bigger than the rest.
4 Knead each piece briefly, and roll it out to a long, fat log shape. The 3 smaller pieces should be about 8in (20cm) long, and the 2 larger ones about 10in (25cm) long. Take the 3 shorter pieces and position them side-by-side on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Place the 2 longer ones on each side and draw the
tops and bottoms together, flaring out the centers to form a “circle.” Pinch the top of the loaf together to ensure that the dough does not come apart.
5 Cover it loosely with lightly oiled plastic wrap and a clean kitchen towel, and leave it in a warm place to rise, until almost doubled in size. This could take 30 minutes to 1 hour. Preheat the oven to 375°F (190°C
6 Gently brush with a little beaten egg and bake for 20 minutes, until golden brown. Remove from the oven and leave to cool for at least 10 minutes before serving.
Best eaten still warm from the oven, the bread can be wrapped in paper overnight and toasted the next day.
The use of eggs, milk, and sugar give this very soft Italian bread a sweet, gentle flavor and velvety texture. It toasts well, but is at its best served still warm with plenty of cold, unsalted butter and homemade strawberry jam. It is especially popular with children
|Pane al latte Recipe|