Let’s Bake with Master Baker Rogelio Amparo, Jr.

Feb 21, 2022 | GMC Let's Bake, GMC Product Stories

How can you elevate your favorite bread to new levels of pillowy softness? The answer is Tangzhong, the Asian yeast bread technique. 

With origins in Japan’s Yudane, Tangzhong is a yeast bread technique popularized across Asia. The technique is best known for giving Japanese Milk Bread its signature feathery soft texture. As a result, Tangzhong is closely associated with this style of bread, versions of which can be found in convenience stores, grocery stores, and bakeries across Japan and elsewhere in Asia.

How does this technique affect yeast dough? It pre-gelatinizes the starches in the flour, meaning they can absorb more water. In fact, the flour will absorb twice as much hot water or milk as it does the cool/lukewarm water or milk you’d usually use in yeast dough.

Not only does the starch in the flour absorb more liquid; since heating the starch with water creates structure, it’s able to hold onto that extra liquid throughout the kneading, baking, and cooling processes. This means:

  • Since there’s less free (unabsorbed) water in the dough, it’s less sticky and easier to knead;
  • The bread or rolls may rise higher, due to more water creating more internal steam (which makes bread rise in the oven — along with the carbon dioxide given off by the yeast);
  • Having retained more water during baking, bread and rolls will be moister and will stay soft and fresh longer.

Because of Tangzhong, bread truly goes from good to great. Not only do they have an enticingly soft texture that will have you dreaming of feather beds and cumulus clouds, but they also stay just as pillowy long after baking.

Now that’s something worth celebrating all year.

Ready to bake? Try out our Recipe for Japanese Milk Bread, Matcha Milk Bread & Chocolate Milk Bread. Plus more! We will also be demonstrating Japanese Cotton Cake. Watch our Technical Seminar on February 26, 2022 from 11am to 1pm at the conference hall of the 2022 FCBAI E-bakery fair.

Happy baking!


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