Bacon brioche

Slices of this moist, sweet loaf with a hint of herbs are delicious eaten on their own or toasted and topped with a poached or scrambled egg
Ingredients (Makes 1 loaf)
  • Sunflower oil for frying
  • 175g/6oz streaky bacon, rind removed, and cut into small pieces
  • 1 small onion, peeled and finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp chopped fresh marjoram
  • 1 small egg yolk lightly beaten with 1 tsp water to glaze
For the dough
  • 60g/21⁄2oz dried yeast
  • 2 tbsp warm water
  • 250g/9oz plain flour
  • Pinch of salt
  • 50g/2oz caster sugar
  • 2 large organic or free-range eggs
  • 125g/41⁄2oz unsalted butter, softened

Heat a film of oil in the base of a frying pan, add the bacon and sweat it until it starts to brown. Add the onion and marjoram and continue cooking until the onion is softened and the bacon is crisp.

Drain on kitchen paper and leave to cool.

Fit the dough hook to your Kenwood Chef.

Dissolve the dried yeast in a small bowl of warm water. Place the flour, salt, sugar, eggs and yeast and water mixture into the mixer bowl. Mix for 5 minutes on low power, then beat in the softened butter.

Turn the mixer up to medium power and continue to beat for a further 5 minutes until the dough is smooth and quite elastic. Add the cooled bacon mixture and work into the dough until it’s evenly distributed. Shape the dough into a ball, place it in a clean bowl and cover with a cloth. Leave at room temperature to rise.

When the dough has doubled in size, lift it from the bowl and knock it back on a lightly floured surface. Then shape the dough into an oblong and place in a lightly oiled and floured 1.2ltr/2pt loaf tin. (The dough should half fill the tin.) Cover with clingfilm and leave to rise at room temperature until the dough fills the tin.

Preheat the oven to 190°C, 375°F, Gas 5.

Brush the top of the loaf with the egg yolk mixture, then bake for about 30 minutes or until risen and golden brown. To test if the brioche is cooked, tip it out of the tin and tap it gently on the base – it should sound hollow. Turn out on a wire rack and leave to cool before serving.
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