ULTRA SOFT STRINGY, STICKY RICE BREAD

  

Is it going to be blue or purple, this wall, or perhaps, a minty green?  Should I tile the bathroom, covering it in organized shines, or leaving it as is, a rustic plaster of diffused grey?  Those clusters, years of emotional settlements that are solidified in actual physical forms, are bothering me, a lot, and I want to dump them all away and start over, as if it could work both ways.  Did I mention these walls here where I stand, damn it, made of fucking concrete, are mockingly strong and defeating and apparently, impossible to drill through by whatever strength and tools I have left.  What’s happened?  I used to be able to drill through lots of things, now apparently, not anymore.  Now I can only paint shit over.  Maybe there’s nothing wrong with that, that it’s just life bitch, but the mirror that came to us from an obliviously happy time of my life from a wholesaler in Jersey City, broad, reflective and inescapable, is now helplessly laying against the ground, catching things ruthlessly from a low and unnatural angel, a woman standing with her head cut off.  The mere wish to just to get it 3 feet up in perspective, to frame things, once again, rightly, seems now both realistically and psychologically, difficult.  I have been dragging my own weight for months, defended no longer by excuses because they, if I had any, are peeling off by now like old paints, revealing the raw surface that has always been behind, staring at me only through a thin mask of pigments that I couldn’t even decide the color of.  Perhaps the problem is not the color.  Perhaps these walls, damn it these fucking walls… have something to say.  And I gotta listen… listen bitch… before moving forward.

Blue or purple, or perhaps, soon hopefully, a minty green?

 

BEFORE YOU GUSH OUT UNGODLY THINGS LIKE “OMG, IT’S GLUTEN-FREE BREAD!”…

SHUSH, IT’S NOT.

  

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Just because you were so nice listening to me rant:

If you had true, unapologetic love for squishy, sweet, and borderline childish white bread that dents like pillows, my friends, you’ll love this bread.  I first discovered this bread in a Korean bakery in Beijing, then again from a bakery inside a supermarket in Hong Kong, both named – “rice bread”.  Before you want to gush out ungodly things like “oh my god oh my god, gluten-free bread!”… shush, because it’s not.  The word gluten-free and bread, as nature intended explicitly and I don’t know how on earth anyone could misunderstand, should not go together.  This is not a mochi-bread either, or at least, not going to eat like one.  This is simply a soft white bread recipe improved by the use of a roux made with sticky rice flour (which, yes, is the ingredient for mochi).  The roux-method, as we know it, improves the moisture level of breads such as these, but instead of flour and water, the roux is made purely with sticky rice flour.  To be exact, 24% of the total weight of flour is sticky rice flour, and 100% of the water goes into making the roux.  This doesn’t only improves the moistness of the bread, but also gives it that specific chew, that perfect spot between elasticity and softness, and if you were a squishy bread-hunter your entire life like me, the unicorn.  So thank you, and you’re welcome as well.

ULTRA SOFT STRINGY, STICKY RICE BREAD

Yield: 2 loaf

Ingredients

  • 1 1/4 cup + 1 tbsp (150 grams) sticky rice flour
  • 1 1/3 cup (315 grams) water
  • 3 1/2 cups (485 grams) strong bread flour (approx 14% protein), plus 2~3 tbsp to adjust
  • 3 large egg whites
  • 1/4 cup (57 grams) granulated sugar
  • 2 1/8 tsp (7 grams) instant dry yeast
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 3/4 tbsp (24 grams) unsalted butter, soften

Instructions

  1. Whisk sticky rice flour and water together and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until it comes together into a thick, smooth blob of goo (there may be some lumps forming amidst cooking but just ignore them). Let sit, stirring occasionally to let heat out, until just warm to the touch.
  2. In a stand-mixer bowl, add strong bread flour, egg whites, granulated sugar, dry yeast, salt, and the cooled sticky rice-mixture. Mix on low first until all the ingredients have come together (you may have to stop and scrape a few times), then turn to medium-high speed and knead for 5 min. Add 1/2 the butter, knead until incorporated, then add the rest of the butter and knead again on medium-high speed for 15~20 min. Yes, that long. In the end, you should have a very very sticky, but smooth and elastic dough. The dough will stick to the sides of the bowl (even during mixing) but it shouldn't look so wet that it's formless. Try to resist adding too much flour but if it seems too wet, add another 2~3 tbsp of bread flour and knead again.
  3. Cover with plastic wrap and let proof on the counter, or in the fridge, until fully doubled. The dough is slightly warm to begin with so it will rise fast, about 1~2 hours in room-temperature or 6 hours in the fridge (I did this in the fridge).
  4. Once doubled, scrape onto a floured surface and divide in half. Keep dusting with flour as needed, and divide 1 portion of the dough into 3 pieces. Roll into long strips (gently punch out the air as you do this) then braid them together. Repeat with the other dough. Place the braided dough into a large loaf pan lined with parchment. Cover well with plastic wrap and another towel on top, and let proof again in the fridge overnight, or 12~18 hours. The next day, they will look slightly poofy but not doubled, probably won't even occupy 1/2 of the volume of the loaf pan. But it's all good.
  5. Leave the breads at room-temperature as you preheat the oven on 355 F/180 C. Place the breads on the middle-lower rack in the oven, loosely covered with a piece of parchment, and bake for 25 min, then remove the parchment and bake for another 20 min until golden browned. The breads will rise dramatically during baking.
  6. Remove from the pan and parchment papers, and let the breads cool for 30 min on a cooling rack. I tear into them like a roasted chicken.

Notes

You can half the recipe for 1 loaf of bread, or make the full portion and freeze 1 loaf after the first proofing and shaping. Let it thaw and rise to 80% at room-temperature for several hours before baking.

http://ladyandpups.com/2016/05/13/ultra-soft-stringy-sticky-rice-bread/
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90 Comments

  • This looks absolutely beautiful. Do you think it could be done by hand? Unfortunately I don’t have a bread machine/kitchen robot.

    Sara

    • Sara, unfortunately, this dough is extremely sticky and difficult to work with by hands. It also requires relentless kneading on high speed. But if you ever try it with hands, let me know if it works. Who knows :)

    • I just made this by hand last night (I also lack the proper mixer/attachments). It was definitely VERY sticky and very messy, but it worked out OK – once the butter was added, it was much, much easier to knead for a while. I think I should probably have kneaded it an extra five minutes or so (I kneaded it for about 15-20), because it didn’t rise as much as it could have during baking and was not as stringy as I think was intended. But, it tastes fantastic and the moisture and texture are really lovely (especially with the crispy crust). I’d say give it a try by hand. :) Worst case you will have imperfect but still delicious bread.

  • Amazing. I will defenitely try this. Two questions though:1/ is it necessary to use sticky rice flour, or can I use regular rice flour instead? 2/ How large is a “large loaf pan”. Thank you for an amazing recipe!

    • Nina, rice flour and sticky rice flour is two very different texture so I’m not sure… but you’re welcome to give it a try? The pan I used is a square pan 11 cm x 21 cm, 4 1/2 ” x 8 1/2 “.

  • Everytime when I read your posts it is when I hate the fact that I’m allergic to wheat the most!! But I couldn’t stop reading one after another over and over again….

  • I made the curry coconut meatballs last week but subbed shrimp and chorizo meatballs because we had fresh roe shrimp and chorizo on hand, it was delicious and decadent! I will tackle this bread this weekend after I go grab some sticky rice flour! Thank you!

  • First, your photo caught my attention and next your writing caught my soul. You are obviously profound, abstract and wonderfully creative. Hat’s (and I have a few ;) ) off to you. And thank you for you artsy and sassy blog. Now where is that coconut meatball recipe I heard tell of a post or two above? :)

  • I live a gluten free life out of necessity, and let me tell you – never for a moment did I believe this DELICIOUS looking recipe was GF! I DIE a little inside when you post bread recipes. This looks killer.

    About the mirror/wall situation: what about a totally skinny console type table? You could lean it perhaps? I’ve experienced the concrete walls before. There is a way to drill into them but you need a special hammer/drill thingy. Luck to you & I’m jealous. I have old plaster that will accept any nail or screw, but eventually just dumps them like yesterday’s trash.

    • Melinda: Mandy states at the top that it is Not Gluten Free!

      “Before you want to gush out ungodly things like “oh my god oh my god, gluten-free bread!”… shush, because it’s not.”

      • Charlie, I think you misread Melinda’s comment. She stated that she understood that the recipe wasn’t gluten free: “…Never for a moment did I believe this delicious looking recipe was GF!” were her exact words.

        Regardless, I love this blog and all the ways that new recipes are presented. Mandy, keep up the good work.

  • Holy crap that looks amazing. Pinning and likely cooking over the weekend…like I didn’t have enough to do already!!

  • I love, love bread like this… but alas I have no mixer and I can’t imagine the kneading. I will just have to drool. I too live in an industrial loft-ish building with concrete walls. I am also a painter, and have many large canvases that are prefect for the space. I’ve used these concrete hangers ( Amazon: http://amzn.to/1rK9BNL ) pretty successfully. Buy more than you think you’ll need, they can break when hammering them in. I have never tried to hang a mirror using them, so the weight of the mirror may preclude their use. However, they do come in different sizes – perhaps one or another will work for you? Re: paint colors – I always go with something warm, usually in the red family : )

  • Hi Mandy,

    One question, I know that Thai and Japanese sticky rice flours are slightly different when cooked/baked. Do you think this recipe would work with Japanese sticky rice (mochi) flour instead of Thai? BTW, welcome back! Nice to see your blog back in action!

  • Hi Mandy!

    Quick question, your pictures show egg yolks but your recipe states egg whites. Just verifying that the recipe use egg whites. Thanks!

  • 85C Bakery (it’s Taiwanese I think) has this super sticky taro swirl bread thing that I have tried and failed to reproduce so many times. When I saw the picture for the recipe with how the bread pulls apart I instantly thought that this looks right. Maybe the sticky rice roux is key. Will make this but will bastardize it with fat splotches of taro throughout. Hope it sticks together.

    P.S. Your writing gives me DFW vibes, I think it’s the undercurrent of irony, the bold sentence or two, and the very specific adjective usage (e.g. borderline childish bread) :)

  • On the concrete wall delimma:

    1) Get you some concrete wall hangers. They’re a turd to get in, but they work. Amazon has a bunch. I’ll second Dawn’s suggestion to get extras, and I’d also get a few different types to see which works best for you.

    2) If that mirror is heavy, hang it with a wall cleat (look up “french cleat”, the thin aluminum kind on Amazon or Home Depot). Use those concrete hangers to screw in the wall cleat, regular short screws for the cleat on the back of the mirror.

    Seriously, the concrete hangers + french cleat for heavy stuff is awesome. I have some large-scale, very heavy stuff hung with those, and it’s really stable. Essentially spreads out the weight across the cleat vs. on single screws/hooks, and only takes 3 screws or so (some of the cleats come with a sh&t-ton of holes – you don’t need to use them all, they’re like that so they’re easy to line up with irregular stud spacing).

  • Love your soulful posts the best, thanks so much for writing!

    Q: how does this bread differ from the Hokkaido loaf?

  • Good info kimithy… On my very large canvases ( 5ft square plus and larger) I’ll use more than 1 of the hangers… There’s just more measuring involved to get them to hang properly. Haven’t tried the cleats, but will definitely investigate those!

  • Made this recipe this morning, but noticed that you only actually add 1/2 the butter…when is the other 1/2 added? (I added it about 1/4 the way through the kneading process) Also what size bread pans did you use because there seems to be lots of choices? (And what kind b/c now I have bread pan envy!)

    • Bob, sorry did I forget the other 1/2? Add the rest after the first 1/2 is fully incorporated into the dough :). There is dimension of the loaf pan in the previous comments (I think it’s 11 cm x 21 cm)

  • I’m not sure if I would attempt to make this exact recipe, but I feel like there are numerous recipes/uses that could come out of this one. I’d prefer you just come up with them and I will copy. Maybe some sort of sticky bun? I wish I was a baker….

    Can’t wait to see photos of the new place!

  • Just made this and followed recipe exactly, it looks and smells great but I didn’t nearly get the rise as you did during baking. Any thoughts?

  • Darn you for taunting me with those perfectly unreal strands of gluten!!!! But bless you because I need to try this soon. I love every bread I’ve tried that was inspired/adapted from you. This looks no less perfect, Mandy!!! <3

  • This looks fantastic! I’ve never made bread like this before (and I make a LOT of bread — exclusively sourdough) and will have to try it out. I have a question though: where did you get those fantastic loaf pans? It’s incredibly hard to find straight-sided pans like this in the US. Do you have a link by chance? Thank you!

  • Do you use the yolks for anything? Do you brush the bread with it before baking? Or would I simply just need to make pudding?

  • Call/WhatsApp SpotHelp to take care of the mirror. They can get a handyman to get it up for you and they are generally AMAZEBALLS and not crazy expensive either. ;) Or IKEA carries concrete hangers here and that’s what we used.

  • Do you have other bread recipies that can be used for rolls which I prefer over loafs of bread or recipes for sweets using yeast?

  • I tried this using my thermomix and everything was going super well until I added the butter. After that it just became a formless mess! Is it possible to over knead?

    • B, I’m not sure what went wrong there… I don’t think you can over knead this. How wet was it? Perhaps add a bit more flour and let it rise anyways and bake without braiding it.

  • I added flour and it was still wet. Ended up baking like a muffin. Coz it was batter like in consistency. ? Will try again

  • I’ve followed your blog for awhile – everything looks awesome and the pictures are just amazing. This is the first recipe I dared to try and it was a hit with my colleagues and family (two loaves!). I also hand kneaded, but the dough was not overly sticky. The local (in Indonesia) bread flour indicates 20% protein; I’m not sure I believe it. But the loaf, while soft and tasty, was not as fluffy as it appears here. Maybe I’ll try the 14% protein flour next time, or a combo of the two. There will for sure be a next time — thanks for the amazing blog.

  • I tried this today,it’s a hard work for the stand mixer. This bread is amazing!!!! So soft ~and sticky rice flour makes it more chewing

  • Just discovered your blog and I’m seriously loving it!! I can totally identify with your aversion to Beijing since I’ve just moved back there. SO MUCH SMOG AND PROPAGANDA. On a brighter note though, where is this Korean bakery that you speak of? Maybe if I stuff my face with enough bread I’ll forget that I’m stuck in smogville :)

  • I made this bread and it was delicious! Mine wasn’t nearly as soft and stringy looking. I did notice it wasn’t that wet or sticky when I was mixing. Too much flour?

  • I made this by hand and with Japanese sticky rice flour (mochiko). It came out GREAT, but this was the stickiest, wettest, most painful bread-making experience I’ve ever had — I swear I thought my arm was just going to fall off by the time I was finished kneading it. It took about a half-hour of flailing and sweating and complaining to get to the right smooth elasticity.

    As cake_lora mentioned above, the first loaf didn’t rise much at all in the oven, so I let the second one rise more before baking it. Also, I noticed that after the first 24 hours, there was a distinct taste of rice/mochi that intensified as we left the bread on the counter, which I kind of liked, but a little odd.

  • Hi Mandy, thank you for the lovely recipes and beautiful photography. May I know if the second rise in the fridge is necessary, or can I do it 2 hours at room temp (27°C)? Trying this recipe out and subbing the liquid with rendang paste and coconut milk, hope it turns out well haha

    • Hi Mandy,
      I really wanted to try this recipe again before replying you because I left out the egg whites TT.TT but I’ve no time. I divided it into 2 batches (the oil in the rendang paste made it practically non-stick), one I baked after a room temp rise (29/30°C), another overnight. The only difference was that the overnight rise had a more distinct mochi flavour, but there wasn’t any other outstanding difference in terms of texture. The oil and spices in the paste did interfere with the gluten formation, so it achieved somewhat 1/3 of the stringy texture as shown in your pictures. But the taste was pretty awesome, like having a bowl of on-the-go rendang hahaa. Hope you can take up this wacky idea of curry flavoured bread and put your magic spin on it. :D

  • This bread is fantastic. I kneaded by hand (instead of with a stand mixer) and everything turned out perfectly! Takes some major muscle but hey, you’ll be thanking yourself when you’re devouring an entire loaf of this bread. Thanks for the recipe! Instant family favorite.

  • Hahaha…..worst baking experience ever! The Kitchenaid was thumping around – so I took some dough out and put it in the Cuisinart. That ground to a halt. When I got hit in the chest by a blob of dough it was game over. Then I couldn’t get the bowl of the Kitchenaid off (boiling water and a hammer got it). Now I’m waiting for the dishwasher to break and the sink to back up! My car probably won’t start tomorrow either………..just sayin’.

    • Eve, omg that sounds horrific! Hahaha so sorry about the mess. I can totally relate (every other baking experience pretty much…). if you have the perseverance to try again, perhaps next time half the recipe and recipe the moisture a bit :)

      • It was like an “I Love Lucy” episode. I have a great recipe from a Betty Crocker Hostess cookbook (that I bought solely for the 1960’s illustrations) for Easy Refrigerator Rolls…..they remind me of your bread. No kneading!. Thanks Mandy, love your work.

      • Hi Mandy, I just baked a fluffy soft sourdough bread using your recipe. I substituted the yeast with a cup of my faithful sourdough starter. The dough was indeed sticky but I used the slap and fold method with a series of stretch and fold. Thanks for sharing.

  • Hi Mandy, I love your recipes. Why does the recipe contain no yolks on both the hokkiado toast and this one? Thank you so much for sharing

    • A.tse, different from brioche, these type of breads are usually “white breads” in Asia, and I think most bakeries want it to be white. But if you want to add yolks, there no reason why you can’t :)

  • This bread was really fun to make, and was delicious! I loved the texture, but it was a bit sweet for me, almost like a challah bread. How important is the sugar for the integrity of the bread? Thanks!

  • Hi Mandy,

    I followed this recipe to a t, but the dough was not nearly as sticky as yours and mine only made 1 loaf. Just looking through your photos, I noticed that in the second photo it looks like there was melted butter or oil added to the dough and was wondering if this was needed in the recipe? I’d love to try this again!

    Thanks!

  • Made it in zorojishi bread machine on wheat setting, as expected it didn’t come out all stringy, but it WAS tasty and super soft! One day I will get a new stand up mixer and do it right, but in the meantime, this is still a good recipe to have on hand. Thank you for sharing!

  • Can you tell me (if you know) what modifications would be necessary for higher altitude cooking with this recipe? (I’m at about 4,000′)

  • Beautiful page, beautiful photos, beautiful recipe. May I say it’s all amazingly beautiful.

    I do have one query…. what is the loaf size assume 2 loaves with the given recipe? grams, volume or quantum physics measurements welcome, though I would prefer grams.

    Thanks for your efforts and contribution to make the world a nice place.

  • Ok, I made these. Mind you they are still Ultra Soft and stringy and everything you promised, but I did something… you know 2 whole eggs (w/o shells) is the same weight as 3 egg whites… and well you know I was not making custard or anything yolky so I did the substitution and honestly they were fantastic. I still have half the recipe in the freezer. Today I broke off to small chunks of the frozen dough, put one in the steamer and one in hot oil I use for my doughnut biz. Guess what, it was also wonderful as steamed buns and doughnuts. The fried one resembled a buttermilk doughnut but more light, and the steamed bun was a bit spongy but yummy. I think I am going to sell the doughnut version, but before I do I think adding some melon to it might be amazing. I let you know when I make the modified recipe. I would post pictures but I don’t see that functionality here, send me an email and I will reply with the photos.

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