The Upper Crust Bakery in Austin, TX holds many childhood memories and baking inspiration for me: lunches of cheese soup and avocado sandwiches with my mom and coffee and cinnamon rolls on a Saturday morning. Before I left Austin, I needed to get one last fix of fresh pastries from my favorite bakery. In addition to the usual cinnamon roll, I was struck by a beautiful, round loaf of bread topped with cheese. Brioche. Filled with cheese. Yum. The bread was so rich and filling, my breakfast partner and I decided to save the cinnamon roll for later and sliced the brioche loaf in half and dug in.
Now that I’ve been in Houston for almost two months, it was time to relive a little Austin and try my hand at baking brioche. I made the dough ahead of time since I’ve learned that letting it sit in the fridge for 24 hours after the initial rise seems to make for better flavor. I made enough dough for two different loaves and decided that one savory and one sweet brioche would be fun.
My first loaf was a classic brioche topped with a little Parmesan cheese. It was delicious and paired perfectly with a chilled cucumber soup. Once the bread started to get a little stale, I crushed up the leftover slices to create breadcrumbs for crab cakes.
I froze the other half of the dough and pulled it out a week or so later to make some chocolate-filled brioche. I just finished baking the second loaf for a weekend breakfast treat. Can’t wait to sample it!