Weekend Cooking: Quick Brioche and Lemon cupcakes

I’ve been hesitant about trying the recipes from The World of Bread by Malaysian baker Alex Goh (can’t seem to find much information online about him other than this outdated blog, but here’s a link to a food blogger who has tried out quite a few of his recipes, including the intriguing Celery Bread).

My mother-in-law gave this to me for Christmas 2010 and nearly four years later, I’m trying out a recipe!

The problem is that baking, especially bread-making, requires specific instructions and the recipes in this book aren’t written that way. The publisher was probably trying to squeeze as much as possible – in English and Malay as you can see below – in this slim volume so details are scant.



I guess I’m used to Rose Levy Beranbaum’s Bread Bible where she specifies both the time and the Kitchenaid mixer speed for each of mixing. And how much the dough should rise during proofing.

So I was rather lost when I read through this recipe. But decided to persevere. Partly because I was intrigued by the instructions to place the dough in the freezer. In the freezer! Dough! In the freezer!

But yeah, it worked, kind of! I didn’t bother with the ‘tete’ or the head so it looks less like a brioche and more like a muffin, because, well, I used a muffin tin. So this brioche-muffin doesn’t look like a brioche but still tasted relatively eggy and buttery. And more importantly, it was really really quick. Just two hours of proofing and then into the oven it goes. I think most brioche recipes call for several hours of proofing or even overnight.

I might try it again but add an extra egg and see if that improves the taste.




And because my Mum is a lover of lemons, I thought I’d make her some lemon cupcakes from Bake by Rachel Allen, a cookbook that she bought for me some years ago. (Check out my post on my cookbook collection here). I’ve had some trouble with some of the recipes from this cookbook before (although others have been quite yummy) and unfortunately, this lemon cupcake recipe had some problems. I had to bake it for quite a bit longer than it called for, and the cupcake itself, without the frosting, was not very lemony despite my adding twice the amount of lemon zest required! But the lemon buttercream was quite lovely.




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  1. I totally understand what you mean about the need for detailed instructions in baking… this reminds me of the technical challenge in The Great British Bake Off, where they will provide an instruction such as “Prepare X ingredient” and see what the contestants decide constitutes preparing.


    1. Oh I think that’s the most worrisome part of the show. First, not knowing what is going to be up the judges’ sleeves (rum baba!!!) and then not given exact details….!



  2. I’ve never heard of freezing dough. The little brioches look yummy though. I’ve been wanting to try out Rachel Allen’s cookbooks for awhile but haven’t yet. I think I’ll definitely be either trying one from the library or trying to find it used since you’ve had sunch inconsistent results with her recipe. Thanks for sharing.


    1. You’re welcome. Yes, as I mentioned, I’ve tried some of her other recipes before but have had to ramp up the flavours and seasonings. I do really like her mocha cake though!



  3. Freezing the dough before baking is new to me. Maybe there were more detailed instructions in the introductory chapters???? This book does seem rather scanty on the instructions.


  4. I’m a bread making newbie and so would appreciate the extra hand holding while baking. Even though I think there can be TOO much instruction (or at least too wordy of instruction), I did appreciate the help with baking as it can be so much more scientific than cooking.

    The lemon cupcake looks delicious!! Love lemon.


    1. I’m still pretty new to bread making myself so I really appreciate the details. Especially on how to shape the bread – mine always looks a bit off! πŸ™‚



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