Saturday, March 3, 2012

Pan de Sal (Salted Bread)

Copyright 2012 LtDan'sKitchen blogs
Pan de Sal or salted bread is a common breakfast bread back home. The trademark of an authentic pan de sal is how it starts to harden as it cools. You usually purchase a bag or two of a dozen pan de sal hot from the oven of your favorite bakery and you have to consume them right away. However, all is not lost when it hardens. They make a great dunking bread be it hot tea, coffee or chocolate. The bread itself has undergone some kind of evolution where the present generation of pan de sals are of the soft variety. Small local bakeries still offer the traditional kind but most high end bakeries and pastry shops offer the softer kind which is good in its own way. 

Copyright 2012 LtDan'sKitchen blogs
This recipe is a reworking of a recipe that was given to me by somebody I know. This version of pan de sal is of the soft variety and the good thing about this recipe is that you don't need a bread maker. A mixer with a dough hook is a big help though. It is also best to use double acting yeast at it cuts the rising time in half. There is no egg in the recipe which might alarm you but it really works. It does use quite a bit of yeast but the bread is really soft and is perfect for small sandwiches.

Pan de Sal

6 cups bread flour
2 2/3 cups warm water
5 packets yeast + 2/3 of a packet
1/3 cup brown sugar + 1 tbsp
1 1/2 tbsp Kosher salt
7 tbsp margarine or buttery sticks, diced and softened
extra margarine to grease the bowl
bread crumbs to dust the dough

1. Heat the water to 110°F. Add the tablespoon of sugar and dissolve. Add
    the yeast and allow to rest until bubbly. Transfer the yeast mixture into
    your mixer bowl.

2. Add the bread flour, margarine, salt, and the remaining sugar. Work the
    dough at medium speed with your dough hook until the dough is smooth
    and elastic.

3. Transfer the dough into a greased bowl and cover with clingfilm. Allow
    the dough to rise and double in size in a warm area. Punch it down and
    let it rise again until doubled in size. Preheat the oven to 350°F.

4. Turn the dough onto a cutting board and cut a fifth portion and roll into
    a baton. Sprinkle with bread crumbs and cut into 2-inch thick slices.
    Transfer to a lined baking sheet that has been sprinkled with bread
    crumbs. Allow to double in size. Do the same for the rest of the dough.

5. Bake in the preheated oven for 15 minutes or until golden brown. Makes
    about 40 rolls.   

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