Pandesal is a favorite breakfast and afternoon snack in the Philippines. There are just so many ways to enjoy it, from dipping it in hot chocolate or coffee, adding sweet or savory spreads to other meaty fillings like hot dogs, corned beef and so much more. Pandesal gives so much of a homey feel that once the aroma of fresh bread hits the whole house you’ll be sure to have your family or friends readily awaiting you to take the bread out of the oven.
A brief history of the Pandesal
Pandesal or ‘salt bread’ as called by the Spaniards has been a staple in many households since the 1900’s and even earlier from its beginning alterations. This used to be a made with wheat flour and was seen as the Spanish-Filipino version of the French baguette, and was baked in a ‘pugon’ or a wood fire oven. This slowly shifted to more affordable flour that was readily available in the Philippines, which resulted to a softer, doughy textured pan de sal. Made with a minimum of ingredients like flour, sugar, egg, oil, yeast, and salt. All mixed and kneaded to create a smooth dough risen to double its size and cut to small pieces. Rolled into breadcrumbs and risen again to ensure it’s fluffy like texture. Baked in the oven and readily served with a warm drink to complete the afternoon break time.
Bread flour vs. All purpose flour and a combination of the two
There are some debate on how to make super fluffy bread, whether you use just one type or flour, to the brand, a mixture of flour, and how much each ratio of flour is needed, but how much of a big difference is bread flour, all purpose flour, and is it better to use a combination of the two?
While both flour are made from wheat or grinding grains, the big difference comes from the gluten and protein content. Bread flour has a higher protein content which produces more gluten, this allows for a higher rise, a chewier and lighter textured bread. Bread flour or also called “strong flour’ is typically used for yeasted breads like pretzels, cinnamon buns, and bagels. These can also create for a great dense chewy and almost sweet like dough. Whereas all purpose flour while versatile and can be used in almost all baked goods like cakes, muffins, cookies, breads, frying, and many more, has a lower protein that creates a firmer textured but structured bread with less rise. In some recipe some do replace bread flour with all purpose flour, and as most bakers have noticed all purpose flour does still create a tender structured bread this may also depend on your use of flour brand.
These can both be interchangeable when making bread in a pinch, but be aware that the texture may come out differently after it’s baked. many who do love the texture of denser bread but want a better rise or a structured bread combine both all purpose flour and bread flour to make a ‘best of both worlds’ like bread. It creates a middle line of texture, structure, look, and better overall feel from crispier outer shell, and better holding bread to a soft fluffy but not so fluffy that it almost crumbles when to try to cut a slice. There are many recipes that try out different ratios of all purpose four to bread flour. In this recipe below we’re sure to give you a guaranteed success in making a fluffy with enough density warm pandesal.
Try out this easy foolproof Pandesal recipe and enjoy your afternoon with freshly baked pandesal, a sweet or savory spread on the side and a warm mug of coffee to wash it all off.
Soft and Fluffy PandesalCourse: Snacks, BreakfastCuisine: Filipino
The fluffiest pandesal you’ll have fun making!
2 teaspoons yeast
1 teaspoon sugar
1/3 cup water
3 cups bread flour
2 cups all purpose flour
½ cup light brown sugar
½ teaspoon salt
1/3 cup milk
½ cup unsalted butter
oil for greasing
1/3 cup bread crumbs
- In a small bowl, mix together yeast, sugar, and water. Set aside for 7-10 minutes.
- In another bowl, mix together bread flour, all purpose flour, light brown sugar, and salt. Add milk, eggs, and the yeast mixture into the dry mixture. Mix till you get a form a soft dough.
- Place the dough in a floured surface and knead the dough till it looks smooth. Add more flour as needed.
- Once the dough looks smooth add the unsalted butter and knead till the butter has been fully absorbed by the dough. Use a scraper to make it easier to knead.
- The dough is ready if you poke the dough and it bounces back to its form. Place this in an oil-greased bowl and cover this for an hour or till it doubles in size.
- Uncover and punch the dough, knead this a little to release air. Cut these into half. Roll one half into a log and cut these into equal sized pieces, or you can use a measuring scale to make sure each piece has an equal weight.
- Form a claw with your hand and roll the dough against a smooth surface. Once this looks smooth roll the ball in breadcrumbs and place these on a baking sheet. Cover and let this rise for an hour.
- Bake these in a 180°C or 350°F preheated oven for 12-18 minutes.
- Eat fresh out of the oven or let it rest for a few minutes in the pan.
- If you find it hard to knead the dough with butter you can also slap the dough on the counter.
- If the dough is too moist after adding the butter you can add 1 – 2 tablespoons of all purpose flour. Its best not to make the dough feel too dry than too moist.
Soft and Fluffy Pandesal recipe (tagalog)
- 2 kutsaritang lebadura
- 1 kutsaritang asukal
- 1/3 tasa tubig
- 3 tasa bread flour
- 2 tasa harina
- ½ tasa light brown sugar
- ½ kutsaritang asin
- 1/3 tasa gatas
- 2 itlog
- ½ tasa mantikilya na walang asin
- mantika pang grasa
- 1/3 tasa bread crumbs
- Sa maliit na mangkok, haluin ang lebadura, asukal, at tubig. Itabi ng 7-10 na minuto.
- Sa ibang mangkok, haluin ng bread flour, harina, light brown sugar, at asin. Ilagay ang gatas, itlog, hinalong lebadura sa dry mixture. Haluin hangang makabuo ng malambot na masa.
- Ilugar ang masa sa makinis na ibabaw na winisikan ng harina. Imasahe ang masa hanggang mukang makinis ito. Wisikan ng harina kung kinakailangan.
- Pagmukang makinis na ang masa ilagay ang mantikilya at imasa hangang nasipsip ng masa ang mantikilya. Gumamit ng scraper para mapadali ang pagmasa.
- Para malaman kung handa na ang masa dapat bumalik ito sa porma pag sinundot. Ilagay ito sa malaking mangkok na grinasa ng mantika. Takpan ito ng 1 oras o hanggang magdoble ng laki.
- Tangalin ang takip at imasahe ng konti para matangalan ng hangin. Hatiin sa dalawa at irolyo ng at hatiin ng magkapantay na bigat, pwede ding gumamit ng timbangan para masiguro ang bigat ng bawat bilog.
- Magbuo ng ‘claw’ na hugis gamit ng kamay at irolyo ang masa sa makinis na ibabaw. Irolyo ito sa breadcrumbs at ilugar ito sa baking sheet. Takpan ito ng 1 oras.
- Iluto sa oben na may init ng 180°C o 350°F ng 12-18 na minuto.
- Kainin habang mainit pa o palamigin ng konti sa pan bago kainin.