Apr 122011

Yes.. it has been months since i last mentioned that i gotta give water roux or tangzhong method a try and i didn’t.. till now.

But better late than never aye? ^_^

After the first successful loaf of tangzhong bread, i proceeded to create a recipe which i heart very much — Black Sesame Bread with Cranberry. I lurrrveeeeeee the combination of black sesame and dried cranberry!

So, what’s tangzhong or water roux method exactly?

What’s the big hoo-haa about tangzhong in bread making? Well, read on and you’ll find out. ;)

From Dodol & Mochi

~~ “In Japanese, tangzhong means either a warm or thin starchy (flour-based) starter. Bread that’s made with tangzhong is called tangzhong bread. So, how does it do the magic of producing bread that stays soft and fluffy longer without the addition of any “artificial ingredients.” As you cook the flour-water mixture for the tangzhong over gentle heat, the starch begins to react with the water via gelatinization. The mixture will subsequently thicken up as the starch traps and locks moisture from the water. The cooking will have to be stopped once the mixture has reached 65C.

Thus, incorporating tangzhong into your bread will give you a soft, fluffy bread that has fine crumbs and springy texture. On top of that, it has better anti-staling effect!”

Soft and fluffy or not, you be the judge (check out the photos though they don’t say as much as eating it for real!).

Needless to say, my weekly bread making no longer uses milk bread recipe. Kekekeeee!

It’s HELLO tangzhong bread for now!

Black Sesame Bread with Cranberry

  • 350g cups bread flour
  • 50g caster sugar
  • 1tsp salt
  • 56g or 1 large egg
  • 7g milk powder (optional)
  • 40g black sesame powder
  • ½cup milk + 1 tbsp milk
  • 120g tangzhong starter
  • 2 tsp instant yeast
  • 30g butter


  1. Place all ingredients in the pan of the bread machine (according to the sequence as stated in the instruction manual of your bread machine). Select the Dough function of the bread machine and press start.
  2. Once the machine beeps (after 1 and half hour + 1 proofing), remove dough and give a few light kneading on a lightly floured work surface. Press out the trapped air as your knead before proceeding to chaffing and letting the dough rest for 5mins.
  3. Divide the dough into 3 pieces and roll each one into 25-30cm long rope.
  4. Place the ropes side by side and start plaiting.
  5. Continue plaiting the ropes until you reach the end. Press the ends together with your fingers and tuck them neatly under the bottom of the plait.
  6. Place the completed plait on a baking sheet or baking tin.
  7. Loosely cover with a damp cloth or cling wrap and let doughs proof for 45 – 60 mins or until double in size.
  8. Bake at preheated oven at 175 degree for about 15 – 20 mins until the bread is golden brown all over. Cover the surface with a sheet of aluminum foil if the surface browns too quickly. Remove from oven, unmold immediately and let cool on wire rack.


This is how i like to eat my black sesame loaf…

It’s really very addictive!

I can eat slices of this and even make this my lunch and dinner. Heee! Then after my first successful attempt on this recipe of mine, i took the bread to a notch healthier.. by making it multigrain!

Rolled oat, white sesame seed, sunflower seed and more black sesame…

Aaahhh… *rubs tummy*

I’m one happy camper :)

Errmm.. and what anti staling?!?!

The boys and i + helper try extremely hard not to wolf down all these breads on the day they are baked… because after all, they are for breakfast the next day! But you can’t blame us, u know.. i mean, who can resist freshly baked bread?!?!?!

So, whether tangzhong is anti staling or not, it is really not very important to this family of mine. Hahahaha!

=> Submitting this post of mine to YeastSpotting for the first time!

Apr 122011

Tangzhong starter is a mixture of bread flour and water / milk / water + milk. The ratio is always 1 (bread flour) : 5 (water).

The mixture is heated to gelatinize which is crucial to make soft and fluffy bread which stays fresh longer.

From Wiki :

Starch gelatinization is a process that breaks down the intermolecular bonds of starch molecules in the presence of water and heat, allowing the hydrogen bonding sites (the hydroxyl hydrogen and oxygen) to engage more water. This irreversibly dissolves the starch granule. Penetration of water increases randomness in the general granule structure and decreases the number and size of crystallineamorphous form. Under the microscope in polarized light starch loses its birefringence and its extinction cross. This process is used in cooking to make roux sauce, pastry, custard or popcorn. regions. Crystalline regions do not allow water entry. Heat causes such regions to become diffuse, so that the chains begin to separate into an

  • Gelatinization is also known as the thickening of a liquid.
  • The starch grains/flour granules absorb the liquid.
  • When heated, the grains/granules swell and then burst, releasing starch into the liquid.
  • The granules/grains swell to 30 times their original size (swelling power, peak viscosity).

To make Tangzhong starter — Water Roux

25g bread flour
125g water


1. whisk flour and water together until the mixture is well blended and lump free. heat the mixture with a whisk over medium heat and stir till it reaches 65 C.

2. the whole process takes about 2-3 minutes only. worry not if you have no thermometer because after my first attempt, i ditched the thermometer. all you need is to stay focus and stare at the mixture. hahaha! no, i kid you not! as you stir, you will notice the mixture gets thicker and thicker until the ‘lines’ appear (see right picture above). this, is tangzhong. immediately remove or switch off fire.

3. transfer tangzhong to a clean bowl and cover loosely with a plastic wrap sticking to its surface to prevent drying (a layer skin will form when it dries up). let it cool completely before using.


Personally, i prefer making the starter on the day i am gonna use it.

I have once let it chilled overnight (just 1 night) in the fridge and the bread i baked the next day turned out not as soft. Or perhaps, it’s just me.. because it seems that tangzhong starter that has aged for 12 hours in the fridge yields better result! However, another school of thought confirms that tangzhong starter doesn’t improve its flavour with age, unlike sourdough starter. Whatever it is, i’m sticking to making tangzhong on my bread making day. :)

Tangzhong can be stored in the fridge up to 3 days but do discard once it turns grey in colour. Just bring it to room temperature before using it.