SQUASH & RAISIN BRIOCHE

The perfect loaf for autumn, warm, soft and comforting. This also makes excellent bread and butter pudding filler.

280g strong white flour
1 tbsp active sourdough starter (optional)
20g egg yolk
35g whole egg
10mL milk
160g squash, peeled, chopped, baked , mashed and cooled
pinch cinnamon
pinch nutmeg
pinch ginger
5g instant yeast
5g salt
water, as needed
40g brown sugar
15g raisins
75g unsalted, cubed and softened butter

Place the flour, eggs, yolks, milk, squash, spices, yeast and salt in a metal bowl or stand mixer. Mix well for a few minutes, the dough should be stiff but come together. If it seems too dry, then add a little water to form the dough. If working by hand, tip the dough onto your work bench.
Slowly mix in the sugar, bit by bit. Knead for a few minutes till well incorporated and the gluten begins to work. The dough will become more elastic and springy. Add the soft butter and mix in until the dough is soft and silky, with a good spring. Add the raisins and combine with the dough.

Transfer the dough back into your greased mixing bowl. Allow it to double in size; this will take around 1 hour at room temperature. Alternatively, place in the fridge overnight (8-12 hours), this will make a better dough, as more flavour develops and the gluten strengthens.

When the dough is ready, tip back onto the work bench and shape as desired. Place into tins or onto greaseproof paper. Brush the dough lightly with egg wash made from remaining egg, a little milk and a pinch of salt. Allow to prove for a further 45 minutes or so.

Preheat the oven to 190ÂșC . Brush your dough once more with the egg wash and bake in the oven for 20-40 minutes depending on loaf style. Allow to cool slightly before eating.