Pumpkin puree and its familiar spice mix of cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, and ginger are kneaded into buttery dough in this seasonal take on the classic brioche. This recipe makes so much sense to me – winter squashes simply roasted with butter is always comforting when in season . These soft yellow puffs topped with crunchy pumpkin seeds have a bit more to offer than its oven-roasted cousin but it took a bit of deciphering to get started.
This pumpkin brioche recipe was derived from a rocket scientist-friendly formula posted in the San Francisco Baking Institute website. Converting every single decimal into manageable measurements was mind-numbing tediousness but the effort was thankfully worth it. I’ll make this again whether pumpkins are in season or not, thanks to the magic of canning.
Here’s to hoping that I’m not the only geek who bakes with a laptop and spreadsheet in the kitchen instead of measuring cups.
Pumpkin Spice Brioche Rolls
makes 24 individual brioche rolls
Nutmeg, cinnamon, and cloves for grinding.
For the Sponge (Pre-fermented Dough):
Ingredients Volume Ounces Grams bread flour 1 cup 4.4 124 water, at room temperature 1/3 cup 2.6 74 instant yeast pinch
Mix the sponge ingredients until evenly distributed and place in a covered bowl.
Let stand at room temperature for 12 to 16 hours before using in the final dough.
Final Dough Formula:
Ingredients Volume Ounces Grams all of the sponge (pre-fermented dough) bread flour 3 cups 13.9 394 milk 4 tsp .7 20 large whole eggs 1 large egg yolks 2 instant yeast 2 tsp unsweetened pumpkin puree 1 1/4 cups 10.5 298 cinnamon, ground 1/2 tsp nutmeg, ground 2/3 tsp ginger, dried ground 1/4 tsp cloves, ground 1/4 tsp sugar 3 tbsp 1.4 40 honey 2 tbsp 1.4 40 butter, softened 10 tbsp 4.9 139
Glaze and Toppings:
toasted pumpkin seeds or pearl sugar / crushed sugar cubes
2 half sheet pans lined with parchment paper
Final Dough Instructions:
Reserve half of the pumpkin puree and butter. It will be added towards the end of kneading. Adding all of the pumpkin puree and butter at the beginning will inhibit gluten development.
Mix Mix all of the ingredients (except the reserved pumpkin puree and butter) until evenly incorporated Knead 8 to 10 minutes Mix Add the rest of the pumpkin puree and butter Knead 4 to 6 minutes (the dough will be very sticky) Ferment #1 45 minutes at room temperature Stretch and Fold Ferment #2 45 minutes at room temperature Divide 24 pieces, approximately 2 ounces/56 grams each Rest 15 minutes at room temperature Shape round rolls Glaze and Top Glaze with the egg wash and sprinkle the tops with pumpkin seeds or pearl sugar Final Proof 90 minutes at room temperature on 2 half sheet pans lined with parchment (12 rolls on each pan) Preheat Oven 380ºF/193ºC Bake Bake for 15 minutes at 380ºF/193ºC, rotating the sheet pans halfway through baking if necessary.
Pumpkin Spice Brioche crumb.