being curious about what earl grey and azuki would taste like in bread form, i made a swirl loaf combining the two flavours. the colors of the two doughs were fairly close together, and hence the swirl is rather subtle. i suppose i could have added a hint of food colouring to make the two flavors more distinctive, but i was focused on taste rather appearance in this iteration.
taste wise, earl grey comes out cleanly and strongly in this bread. after a bite, my first thought was, “my my, it really does taste like earl grey!” it’s a bit like having your toast and cup of tea all at once. the red bean flavour comes across more subtly like a cup of chai that serves as a foil to the piquant aroma of the earl grey.
i think i may have stumbled upon one of the true pleasures of home baking — the ability to churn out non-mainstream flavour combinations!
i made this bread by making two hokkaido milk loaf doughs and blending in the respective flavourings. (yes, i have a ton of bread sitting in the freezer).
- for the earl grey dough: bring the milk in the recipe to a boil, and then steep 1 tbsp of loose earl grey tea in the milk. allow the milk to cool down until it’s just warm to the touch. then use a strainer to remove the tea leaves. you can then add the yeast to the milk to activate it. i also ground up some additional earl grey tea leaves in a spice grinder and added about 1-2 tsp of the earl grey powder into the dough with the flour.
- for the azuki dough: i added in a 1/2 cup of azuki paste when i added in the cream.