For the longest time, I have wanted to try out the tangzhong (汤种法) or water roux method of baking, which is a baking technique made popular by the Japanese and then widely adopted by Taiwanese and other bakers in Asia.
The tangzhong method of preparing the dough delivers soft and fluffy bread that stays fresh without the use of any preservatives. Many Asian food bloggers swear by the method; I have been fascinated by the technique but only have a chance to try it out recently.
The tangzhong method lies in the creation of a “bread starter” by cooking the bread flour and water mixture until it reaches the temperature of 65° C. This 65° C bread starter increases the moisture absorption of the typical dough and hences produces soft, light, and pillowy bread. There are many recipes online using the tangzhong method and I decided to try cheese breadsticks because both little G and I love it. It’s one of those things that he would always asks for whenever we are at an Asian bakery store.
As you all know, I’m an inexperience baker so the method took me the whole afternoon. The end result of the cheese breadstick was satisfactory and we all enjoyed the warm and soft breadsticks that were fresh off the oven. I left some of them at room temperature for a few days but I personally find that there is no difference compared with the breads I got from the bakery. The cheese breadsticks didn’t stay soft and fresh after the first day.
Anyway, I’m still glad that I tried out the cheese breadstick recipe and the tangzhong method. As to whether or not I will continue to use this method to bake, I probably won’t. Living in Irvine, we are spoiled with the many varieties and very good baked goods sold by Asian bakery stores. To me, it’s just so much easier to buy from the store. ;)
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