Our savory Pull-Apart Milk Bread Wreath features the most versatile of doughs, Japanese milk bread—a tender enriched dough that receives a moist boost from tangzhong, or Milk Roux. Packed with dill, butter, and garlic powder, the bread dough is mixed, proofed, shaped, and assembled the day before. The day of, only a final proof and short bake remains!
- ⅔ cup (160 grams) plus 1 tablespoon (15 grams) whole milk, room temperature and divided
- 4 tablespoons (48 grams) granulated sugar, divided
- 1 (0.25-ounce) package (7 grams) active dry yeast*
- Milk Roux (recipe follows), room temperature
- 3 to 3¼ cups (381 to 413 grams) bread flour
- ¼ cup (57 grams) plus 2 tablespoons (28 grams) unsalted butter, melted and divided
- 2 large eggs (100 grams), room temperature and divided
- 3 tablespoons (8 grams) lightly packed chopped fresh dill
- 2¼ teaspoons (6.75 grams) kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon (3 grams) garlic powder
- Everything bagel seasoning, for sprinkling
- Garnish: chopped fresh dill
- In a small microwave-safe bowl, heat ⅔ cup (160 grams) milk on high in 10-second intervals until an instant-read thermometer registers 110°F (43°C) to 115°F (46°C).
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, whisk together warm milk, 1 tablespoon (12 grams) sugar, and yeast. Let stand until foamy, about 10 minutes.
- Add Milk Roux, 3 cups (381 grams) flour, ¼ cup (57 grams) melted butter, 1 egg (50 grams), dill, salt, garlic powder, and remaining 3 tablespoons (36 grams) sugar to yeast mixture; beat at low speed just until combined, stopping to scrape sides of bowl.
- Switch to the dough hook attachment. Beat at low speed for 3 minutes. Increase mixer speed to medium-low, and beat until a soft, smooth dough forms, 6 to 8 minutes, stopping to scrape sides of bowl; add up to remaining ¼ cup (32 grams) flour, 1 tablespoon (8 grams) at a time, if dough is too sticky. Check dough for proper gluten development using the windowpane test. (See Note.) Cover and let rise in a warm, draft-free place (75°F/24°C) until doubled in size, 40 minutes to 1 hour.
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Place a 1¾-inch round metal cutter in center of prepared pan.
- Punch down dough; let stand for 5 minutes. Divide dough into 20 portions (about 38 grams each). Roll each portion into a ball, pinching any seams closed if needed. Place 6 dough balls in a circle around cutter, leaving a ¼-inch gap between dough balls and cutter. Place remaining dough balls, evenly spaced and almost touching, outside first circle. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
- Let rolls rise, covered, in a warm, draft-free place (75°F/24°C) until doubled in size and dough holds an indentation when poked, 1 to 2 hours.
- Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C).
- In a small bowl, whisk together remaining 1 egg (50 grams) and remaining 1 tablespoon (15 grams) milk.
- Gently remove cutter from center of pan; brush egg wash on top of dough.
- Bake until golden brown and an instant-read thermometer inserted in center registers at least 190°F (88°C), 15 to 18 minutes. Brush tops of warm rolls with remaining 2 tablespoons (28 grams) melted butter. Sprinkle with everything bagel seasoning. Garnish with dill, if desired. Serve immediately.
Note: To use the windowpane test to check dough for proper gluten development, lightly flour hands and pinch off (don’t tear) a small piece of dough. Slowly pull the dough out from the center. If the dough is ready, you will be able to stretch it until it’s thin and translucent like a windowpane. If the dough tears, it’s not quite ready. Beat for 1 minute, and test again.
- ⅓ cup (80 grams) whole milk
- 2 tablespoons (16 grams) bread flour
- In a small saucepan, whisk together milk and flour. Cook over medium-low heat, whisking constantly, until thickened, an instant-read thermometer registers 149°F (65°C), and whisk leaves lines on bottom of pan. Transfer to a small bowl, and let cool completely before using.
1 Day Before:
- Make dough.
- Proof dough, 40 minutes to 1 hour.
- Divide dough and shape into a wreath.
- Cover and refrigerate overnight.
- Proof dough, 1 to 2 hours.
- Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C).
- Brush dough with egg wash.
- Bake for 15 to 18 minutes.
- Brush with butter; sprinkle with seasoning and dill.