Chocolate Brioche

Sponge:

1/4 Cup Chocolate Soymilk

1 1/4-Ounce Packet Active Dry Yeast

1/2 Cup Bread Flour

1/4 Cup Granulated Sugar

Dough:

3 Cups Bread Flour

1/2 Cup Dutch Processed Cocoa Powder

1 1/2 Teaspoons Salt

1/4 Teaspoon Ground Cinnamon

1 Package Chocolate Silken Creations

1/4 Cup Margarine, at Room Temperature

Chocolate Swirl:

6 Ounces Semi-Sweet Chocolate, Chopped

2 Tablespoons Granulated Sugar

To begin the sponge, briefly warm the soymilk for just 30 - 60 seconds in the microwave, and then sprinkle in the yeast. Let the mixture stand for about 5 minutes, and then mix in the sugar and flour. Cover with plastic wrap, and allow the sponge to rest for 30 - 45 minutes until it appears bubbly.

When the sponge is ready, move it into the bowl of your stand mixer, and add the flour, cocoa, salt, and cinnamon. Mix on low speed with the paddle attachment for a minute, and add in the chocolate silken creations. Continue to stir slowly until the dry goods seem to be mostly incorporated, and then increase to medium speed, beating the dough for 5 minutes.

Switch to the dough hook attachment, and continue mixing on a low speed. Slowly begin to incorporate the margarine, one tablespoon at a time, until no pieces are visible throughout the dough. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and dough hook as needed to make sure that the dough is completely homogeneous.

Let rest for 10 minutes before turning the dough out onto a well-floured surface. Kneed by hand for approximately 10 minutes, adding flour as needed, until smooth and elastic. Place the dough in a lightly greased bowl, cover with plastic, and let rise in a warm place for 2 - 3 hours, until doubled in volume.

Once risen, punch the dough down, scrape it out of the bowl and onto a lightly floured surface. Press it out gently but firmly with your knuckles into a rectangle, about 15 x 7 inches. For the chocolate swirl, place the chocolate and sugar in a food processor, and pulse until you achieve a coarse but fine meal. Sprinkle this mixture evenly over the rectangle of dough, leaving an inch of one of the short sides clear. Press the chocolate in lightly, and roll the dough up, ending at the clear strip to seal the roll. Pinch the edge together, and place the loaf, seam-side down, in a lightly greased 8 x 4 inch loaf pan. Place in a warm area, and let rise once more for 45 - 60 minutes.

As the loaf nears the end of its second rise, preheat your oven to 375 degrees. Bake for 25 - 30 minutes, until well-browned and has an internal temperature of 200 degrees.

Let cool completely before slicing.

Makes 1 Loaf

©Hannah Kaminsky http://www.bittersweetblog.com