By Chef Ximena Llosa
As I write this, my house smells amazing…I just finished taking the pictures for this recipe and even my neighbors knocked on my door asking me…“What are you baking now, Ximena?” So of course, I shared the spare brioche bread I had just made!
This recipe was inspired by the Peruvian dessert “Encanelado” which is a cinnamon cake, soaked in a Pisco syrup and filled with manjarblanco (our version of dulce de leche). I really like to teach people how to make bread, since I find it so relaxing. The way the dough rises, and the smell that comes from the oven is amazing! If you want, you can also make this recipe with store-bought brioche, but give it a try to make it yourself! You will be surprised by how easy it is!
I wanted to make this recipe to give you an idea for something different, full of flavor and special for Mother’s Day. If you are a daughter, make this recipe for your mom or grandma or, if you are a husband, make it for your wife! It tastes better if it’s served on a beautiful tray in bed! (And DON’T forget the flowers…)
3 ½ teaspoons dry yeast
1 lb + 7 oz (650 gr.) all-purpose flour
6 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons salt
½ cup warm milk
3 sticks unsalted butter (minus 1 tablespoon) (300 gr.)
1 cup brown sugar
6 tablespoons powdered cinnamon
* In a small bowl combine the yeast, some of the warm milk and a pinch of sugar. Wait for 5 minutes until the yeast starts to bubble and grow, that way you know it is OK and alive.
* In the bowl of a heavy mixer, using the hook, mix the flour, sugar and salt. Start adding the milk, yeast, and the eggs, one by one.
* At first the dough looks a bit hard and dry but it will soften when, after 5 minutes, you start adding the butter, cut in small pieces. It has to be incorporated very slowly. Keep beating, and after 10 minutes, the dough will be shiny and smooth.
* Transfer the dough to a greased bowl (use butter, not oil) and let it rise for 2 hours, covered with a kitchen towel. The bread dough must be on a warm place to be able to rise properly.
* Then you have to put it on a table with some flour and knead the dough with your hands for 5 minutes.
* Divide the dough in two, and roll it using a rolling pin. Sprinkle with half of the brown sugar and half of the cinnamon.
* Roll and fold the edges towards the inside. Put on 2 greased loaf breads molds.
* Let rise again for 45 minutes.
* Brush with a beaten egg and cook at 400F, for approximately 40 minutes.
* Cool and then cut in thick slices .
1 can unsweetened evaporated milk
12 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
* In a saucepan bring to a boil the milk, sugar and vanilla. Cook, moving constantly with a wooden spoon or whisk until it looks like a medium thick sauce.
1 cup water
½ cup sugar
1 cinnamon stick
¼ vanilla bean
1 tablespoon Pisco
* In a saucepan bring to a boil all of the ingredients (except the Pisco) and cook for 15 minutes. Turn off the heat, let the syrup cool and pour the Pisco.
1/4 cup milk
2 tablespoons butter
In a deep dish whisk the eggs and milk, soak each piece of brioche in this mixture, and let it brown on both sides, in a pan with melted hot butter.
On a beautiful plate put one piece of cinnamon french toast, pour some manjarblanco on top, and drizzle some of the Pisco syrup on the plate. Garnish with cinnamon sticks and lavender flowers… although any flowers for Mom will do!
Enjoy with some fresh coffee , and lots of hugs!
I am a Peruvian chef, studied at Le Cordon Bleu cooking school in Paris, and have worked in countries like Italy, Peru, Brazil, Colombia and now Mexico as a chef, cooking teacher, restaurant consultant, and caterer.
I’m married and a mother of three beautiful kids!
My great passions are cooking and teaching! I love to show other people how easy cooking can be and also, how fun and rewarding it is! Hope you enjoy my recipe.