twd: brioche overload with snails and french toast


for this week's tuesdays with dorie, madam chow of madam chow's kitchen choose dorie's ooey gooey sticky pecan buns. everyone loves sticky pecan buns ... except for the mimis. even the gorgeous gooey photo in dorie's book didn't appeal to us.

but brioche ... now that is something even the village idiot would love! i've never made brioche before, so i was up to the challenge. also, dorie's brioche method is slightly different than others i have read, from the way the butter is added to the way it is rolled for the loaf pan. so let's give it a whirl and see what happens!

and a whirrled it went, my poor KA was huffing and puffing and still those butter chunks were just whirrling around the side of my dough instead of getting properly incorporated. no way i could finish this dough on LOW speed as dorie instructs. so a little faster, a little more huffing and puffing, and finally it came together.

brioche raisin apricot snails

for my alternative to sticky buns, i chose a previous TWD selection of brioche raisin snails. yumm. i didn't quite have enough raisins on hand, but i always have a bunch of dried apricots around, so i chopped those up too. i also used armagnac instead of rum for a more traditional flambé. i also doubled the sugar filling because i like it like that.

before rising

but oops, i used a pastry cutter to slice my snails and they ended up a wee bit squished. and oops, i don't know what happened but they got really really brown (burnt?) and i cooked them for probably 10 minutes less than indicated. i have an oven thermometer, so i know the temp was right (in fact, it was a little low in the beginning) so i have no idea what happened. but it wasn't anything a little drizzled sugary icing couldn't fix!

a little toasty
a little toasty

meets a little icing
a little icing

and what about the rest of the brioche dough? we went for the obvious. some classic brioche french toast the next morning. to make myself feel better for all that buttery goodness i tried to pretend i wasn't eating i went out and played two hours of tennis afterwards. somehow it all balances out, riiight? ;)


brioche french toast

to get your goo on with hundreds of sticky pecan buns, please check out the rest of tuesdays with dorie!

brioche raisin snails
adapted from dorie's baking handbook (p. 56)

1/2 cup raisins
1/2 cup dried apricots, chopped
a pour of armagnac or other brandy
3 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp cinnamon
your favorite brioche recipe
your favorite pastry cream recipe
your usual sugar icing recipe

1. line one or two baking sheets with parchment. mix sugar and cinnamon (you probably won't use the full doubled amount, so reduce if you want).

2. put raisins and apricots in small pan, cover with hot water and let them steep for about 4 minutes until they are plumped. drain raisins/apricots and return to pan, stirring, and warming them over low heat. pour a bit of armagnac on the mix, and ignite with long match or lighter. if your kitchen hasn't burned down (haha, just kidding, really flamb
éing is easier than you think) set aside.

3. on well floured surface, roll dough into rectangle 12 inches wide and 16 inches long, with short end towards you - oops!! i don't think i did this either! spread pastry cream across dough, leaving 1 inch strip bare on the side farthest from you. scatter raisins/apricots and sprinkle with cinnamon sugar mix.

4. starting with side nearest, roll dough into cylinder. with chef's knife, using sawing motion, trim just a bit of the ends if not even. then cut the log into rounds 1 inch thick. put snails on lined baking sheet, leaving some space between each. cover with wax paper and let double in volume, about 1-2 hours.

4. meanwhile preheat oven to 375F. bake snails for about 25 minutes or until puffed and richly brown (or really dark brown in my case, mwahaha!) transfer snails to cooling rack and then drizzle with the good sugary stuff.




  1. We loved the dough without anything, I agree it's great.

    Ulrike from Küchenlatein

  2. I love the snails with the icing! Now I have to go and make the brioche bread again, I want french toast!

  3. Mmmm... loved those snails. Glad you got the chance to make them. Your pictures are fabulous. Great job!
    Clara @ I♥food4thought

  4. Anonymous27/5/08 13:33

    Well, I think they look positively gorgeous. And that french toast? Oy vey.

  5. Mimi, those look pretty darn good to me!
    Madam Chow

  6. I think I want to make that bread as well with the rest of my dough.

    I gave mine away otherwise I would be in my Zumba class every day!

  7. Mmm I should have saved a loaf to make french toast with. Great job.

  8. is that brioche french toast i see??! yummmmm!! your loaf looks amazing too!

  9. Brioche French Toast, pinch me, I'm in Heaven. Your photos, I want to dive right into! I'm going to have to take a stab at Tuesdays with Dorie, sure seems like fun!

  10. Oh, the snails are good. But Brioche French Toast ... now, that's inspired.


  11. I loved the Brioche Raisin Snails. I think its one of my favs so far. Your french toast brioche looks killer!

  12. you made some fabulous stuff! french toast, oh my!!!

  13. Anonymous27/5/08 20:09

    The tennis makes it ok!

  14. Great job tackling the brioche- I hope you liked the snails even if they were a little "toasty". They are one of my favorite recipes from the book- but anything made with brioche is amazing in my book!

  15. Anonymous27/5/08 22:48

    I whish I had done some plain brioche too! It just looks too good! Beatiful snails :)
    *and thanks for your comment on my blog

  16. The apricots in those look really tasty! Great job - and mine browned too much too. I need to remember to check about three quarters of the way through and put foil on things.

  17. While it all looks great, the french toast is what has me salivating. The brioche loaf looks just gorgeous.

  18. everything look sooooo completely yummy!!!

  19. I am envious of your brioche loaf. My extra dough was used to re-make the buns. Now I think I will have to make the brioche loaf - it just looks so good.

  20. I wonder if maybe you cut them too thin?
    The french toast was a great idea.

  21. I think I wish I had done the snails instead - the sticky buns were almost too much. I used to have an easier Brioche recipe that was in an Anton Mossiman book so perhaps I will look that out and have a go

  22. Your snails and brioche loaf look wonderful! You did such a great job.

    Beautiful photos!

  23. Oh, my. Brioche french toast? I love french toast, so I may have to give that a try.

  24. That brioche dough looks so light, yellow, and fluffy! It looks so delicious

  25. Yum!! Everything looks so good. I was thinking about how perfect the brioche would be for french toast. I really wanted to make the raisin snails... I guess I'll have to make more brioche! As for the butter not incorporating, mine worked out really well but then my butter was EXTREMELY soft.

  26. Gorgeous snails and brioche! Your bread turned out absolutely perfect, and I absolutely love making french toast out of it as well. Great job!

  27. All of your pics are making me wish I still had some of that dough around! Beautiful!

  28. Your brioche loaf looks amazing! I just love this recipe!

  29. Oh my goodness, this all looks amazing! I'll take one of those snails with some coffee please!

  30. I still need to make the snails - those look good!

  31. I froze the other half of my dough thinking that I would make some more in a few weeks again, but now that I have seen your bread...I am thinking that the dough will go there instead! Thanks for sharing all your ideas...lots of photos to choose from here.