Brioche Au Chocolat


I was feeling extra fancy the other night, so I put on my fanciest ball gown, applied three layers of lipstick and four layers of mascara, and then slipped into my highest pair of high heels.

My husband panicked, thinking he’d forgotten an important event. He ran to the closet and put on his tux and then slicked back his hair.

I grabbed his hand and lead him to to the kitchen, poured some flour and eggs and butter into the mixer and started making Brioche Au Chocolat.

Nothing makes me feel fancier than having Brioche Au Chocolat for breakfast.

I’m not going to lie, the husband was kind of irritated. Then I shoved a bite of this delectable pastry in his pie hole and he shut right up.

Alright, so none of that is actually true, other than the part where I threw some things in a mixer and made Brioche Au Chocolat for breakfast. I was wearing my ratty old sweatpants while I did it.

In fact, I was wearing the pants that my husband once called “hideous.”

You’d think he’d know better than to call a lady’s outfit hideous, but no. Boys are kind of dumb. It’s no big deal. I just dipped his toothbrush in the toilet water to get back at him. Then I farted on his pillow.

So, um, I think we got off track. We were talking about fancy things.

This recipe looks intimidating, but as long as you have a stand mixer it’s really quite simple. There is a lot of wait time involved, but the hands on time isn’t too terrible. It’s absolutely worth every minute, too. You’ll feel like you’re standing in a French bakery devouring a decadent treat, but in reality you’ll just be standing in your messy kitchen, wearing hideous pants, covered in pastry cream, while shoveling two of these in your mouth at a time.

Some notes about this recipe: You’ll want to make the brioche dough and the pastry cream the night before you plan to bake the pastries. Once removed from the refrigerator the next morning, you’ll need about 20 minutes of hands on time for rolling out the dough and filling the pastries. The dough will then need to rise for 2-3 hours, bake for 30 minutes, and cool for 30 minutes. The remaining half of the brioche dough (you’ll only use half of it for this recipe), can be frozen. I shared a recipe for Sugar and Spice Brioche Buns and Sticky Brioche Buns if you’re looking for something to do with the remaining dough. You can also freeze these pastries by wrapping them individually in plastic wrap. You’d then thaw them at room temperature for 3-4 hours or in the fridge overnight before proofing the dough.

Also, I overbaked my pastries just a bit. Yours shouldn’t be quite this dark when you remove them from the oven! Whoops!

Print Recipe

Brioche au Chocolat

Ingredients:

1/2 recipe brioche dough (recipe below)
1 recipe pastry cream (recipe below)
2/3 cup semisweet or bittersweet chocolate chips
1 egg, beaten

Directions:

On a floured surface, roll out the brioche to a rectangle sized 20x10 and 1/4 inch thick.
Position the dough so that the long side is facing you. Spread the pastry cream evenly over the entire surface of the dough. Sprinkle the chocolate chips over the bottom half of the dough - a 20x5 inch section.
Fold the dough in half, bringing the top section of dough down over the chocolate chips. Smoosh it into place. Use a pizza cutter or bench scraper to slice the dough into 2x5 inch pieces.
At this point, you can wrap the pastries tightly in plastic wrap and freeze them. When ready to bake thaw them in the fridge overnight and then continue to the next step.
Place the pastries on a parchment lined baking sheet a few inches apart and cover loosely with a towel.
Place in a warm spot to proof for 2-3 hours or until the dough is pillowy. (I place them in my oven with the oven light turned on.)
Brush the tops of the pastries with the beaten egg.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees and bake the pastries for 25-30 minutes or until golden brown. Let cool on the baking sheet for 30 minutes and serve.
Store in an airtight container for up to 1 day and rewarm in a 300 degree oven for 5 minutes before serving.

Brioche Dough

Ingredients

  • 2 1/4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 2 1/4 cups bread flour
  • 1 1/2 packages (3 1/4 teaspoons) active dry yeast
  • 1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup cold water
  • 5 eggs
  • 1 cup plus 6 tablespoons (2 3/4 sticks) unsalted butter (I used salted), cut into 10 or 12 pieces, room temperature.

Instructions

  1. In a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook, combine everything but the butter. Beat on low speed for 3 or 4 minutes, or until everything has come together. Stop the mixer as needed to scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl to be sure that all of the flour is incorporated. Once the dough comes together, continue mixing on low for another 3 or 4 minutes. The dough will be very stiff and dry.
  2. On low speed, add the butter one piece at a time. Mix well after each addition until it disappears into the dough. Continue mixing the dough on low speed for 10 minutes, stopping occasionally to scrape down the bowl. It is important that all the butter is mixed thoroughly into the dough. You may need to stop the mixer and use your hands to help mix in the butter.
  3. Once the butter is completely incorporated turn up the speed to medium and beat for another 15 minutes or until the dough becomes sticky, soft, and shiny. It will look shaggy at first, but it does eventually turn smooth and silky. Turn the speed to medium-high and beat for one minute.
  4. Test the dough by pulling at it. It should stretch a bit and have a little give. If it seems wet and loose or more like a batter than a dough, add a few tablespoons of flour and mix until it comes together. If it breaks off into pieces when you pull at it, continue to mix on medium speed for another couple of minutes or until it develops more strength. It is ready when you can gather it all together and pick it up in one piece.
  5. Place the dough in an oiled bowl and cover it with plastic wrap, pressing the wrap directly onto the dough. Let proof in the refrigerator for 6 hours or overnight. At this point you can freeze the dough for up to 1 week.
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Pastry Cream

Ingredients

  • 1 1/4 cups milk
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 3 tablespoons all purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon corn starch
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Instructions

  1. In a medium saucepan, scald the milk over medium heat.(Bubbles should form on the outer edges of the milk, but do not let it boil.)
  2. In a small bowl, stir together the sugar, flour, corn starch, and salt.
  3. In a medium bowl, beat together the egg yolks. Stir in the flour mixture.The mixture will be thick.
  4. Remove the milk from the heat and very slowly add the egg mixture to the milk, whisking constantly. You want to avoid scrambling the eggs, so you need to drizzle the egg mixture in very slowly and stir constantly.
  5. Turn the heat to medium and whisk the mixture constantly. As it cooks the mixture will thicken considerably.
  6. Once it thickens, stop whisking every few seconds to see if the mixture has come to a boil. As soon as you see it bubbling, whisk for ten seconds more and remove from the heat.It will become grainy if you allow it to boil for too long.
  7. Stir in the vanilla.
  8. Remove to a bowl and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight.
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recipes slightly adapted from Flour Bakery