As much as I love a hearty sourdough bread, sometimes I just crave for some super soft and pillowy Japanese style hokkaido milk bread. I remember I used to have that a lot when I was small. Slathering it with loads of butter and jam is my favorite breakfast. Whenever I saw this kind of bread at the bakery, it always makes me nostalgic. However, finding a loaf of vegan milk bread here is literally a mission impossible.
Luckily, I recently came across the Vegan Milk Bread recipe from the amazing Seitan Is My Motor and I decided to give it a go. She used yeast in her recipe, but you know how much I love naturally leavened bread, so I switched out the yeast with a sweet stiff sourdough starter. Tangzhong method is also used in this recipe, which allows the flour to absorb more water, resulting in a moister bread and the best thing is, this bread will stay soft and fresh longer.
Jumping Out Of My Comfort Zone
This recipe is quite different from my usual sourdough recipe, so I don’t really feel confident in trying it. However, I am very glad that I tried it coz IT WAS SO GOOD! Traditional Japanese milk bread recipes usually call for Hokkaido milk, here I replaced it with almond milk and tofu. And the outcome is exactly what I am looking for! Soft, pillowy, slightly sweet and buttery.
Super Soft Sourdough Vegan Milk BreadCourse: MainCuisine: JapaneseDifficulty: High
- Stiff levain
45g bread flour (I used Bob’s Red Mill Artisan bread flour)
15g sourdough starter (learn how to make your starter here)
90g soy milk
15 g bread flour
- Bread dough
140 g soy milk
50 g sugar
305g bread flour
50 g silken tofu, blended
3 g salt
42 grams vegan butter, soft (I used Miyoko‘s)
- “Egg” Wash
2 tablespoons of sugar dissolved in 3 tablespoons of water
- In the morning, mix the starter ingredients in a jar. Press down with your knuckles to create a uniform surface and to push out air to reduces drying out. Leave at room temperature for around 5-6 hours or until it doubles in size.
- In a sauce pan set on med-low heat, whisk the almond milk and flour until blended. Then cook for several minutes until thickened, stirring regularly. Place it in a bowl and let it cool.
- The night before, mix everything (except the vegan butter) in a mixing bowl until combined. Then place the dough in the fridge overnight.
- The next morning, take the dough out from the fridge when you mix the starter. Allow the dough to sit at room temperature when the levain is rising.
- When the levain has doubled in size, add the stiff levain and hand knead for 10-15 mins. Let it rest for 15 mins and then add the COOLED Tangzhong and softened butter, mix for around 5-10 mins. It should not stick to your hands and should pass the windowpane test.
- After mixing, perform 2 sets of S&F in 30-min intervals.
- Leave untouched and let it rise for another 4-5 hours (or until it doubled in size).
- Scrape the dough out onto a clean counter top. Pre-shape. Rest for 15 mins. Grease your bread pan.
- Divide the dough into 3 equal portions. Shape them into 3 small rectangular logs and place them into the greased bread pan.
- Cover and let it rise for another 2-4 hours.
- Preheat the oven to 180°C. Brush the surface of the dough with “Egg” wash and bake for 35 mins. Take out the bread and brush with more “egg” wash. Bake for another 2-3 mins.
- Let cool completely before serving ☺️