Monday, August 23, 2010

Tang Zhong Toast 湯種吐司/ Tang Zhong Cinnamon Rolls湯種玉桂卷

The reason why I had been so busy these days was Tang Zhong (湯種) toast bread.  Ever since I had tried it, I couldn’t stop.  My kids love it.  My husband, for the first time, even said it’s comparable to those of J-Town.  So I don’t buy bread from stores anymore.  Yet the bread is so popular that I have to bake quite often to keep up with the demand. This recipe was written in Chinese.  Jennifer just reminded me that I hadn't posted the English recipe yet.  Here it is:


A) Dough starter (Tang Zhong)
  • Bread flour         20g
  • Water               80ml
  • Unsalted butter  10g
  • Salt                  ¼ tsp

B) Milk              130ml

C) Dough
  • Bread flour         300g
  • Milk powder       15g
  • Sugar                25g
  • Instant yeast     1 ½ tsp
  • Salt                  ¼ tsp
  • Water               20 – 30ml
  • Unsalted butter  20g (room temperature)

  1. Cook ingredients (A) in pot on low heat, whisk until a paste formed. Scrape it to a large mixing bowl.
  2. Add ingredient (B) to cool the temperature.
  3. Add ingredients (C) excluding water and butter to the bowl.  Start mixing.  It will be very sticky.
  4. After everything well mixed, add water.  Keep kneading until the water is evenly mixed in.
  5. Add butter. After kneading in the bowl for about 30 times, all moisture should be absorbed and the dough should be smooth.
  6. Take it to a floured surface and keep kneading for 10 more minutes.
  7. Shape the dough into a ball, put it in a slightly greased bowl, seam side down.  Cover with plastic and leave it in a warm place.
  8. After 50-60 mins, size of the dough should be about doubled.  Punch it down and knead a few times on a lightly floured surface again to remove bubbles.
  9. Put the dough in a greased 9” x 5” loaf pan.  Press it down.  Wait for second proof rising up to about the height of the loaf pan.
  10. Brush with egg wash and put it in preheated 390F oven, middle rack for 25 mins.*

 *Check in 3 mins, cover top of the bread with foil.  Otherwise it will burn.

Recently from Happy Home Baking, I also found a different tang zhong recipe for cinnamon rolls.   She made it sound so easy, and it was!  Just roll out the dough to 9" x 13" after first proof.  Brush with melted butter and sprinkle with cinnamon (1 tsp) and brown sugar (30g)  mixture.  Roll, cut, arrange in pan with cut side up.  Brush top with more butter and cinnamon sugar mixtre, then wait for second proof.  Then it's baking time.  That's it!  My house smells like a bakery almost everyday.  They are so soft!  Oh no, I’m supposed to be on a low carb diet!


  1. i have tried your method, and i purposely baked to loaf of bread one with tang zhong and another without. End up both are soft bread and seems no different at all. Wondering what is the purpose of tang zhong if it yield the same result. Or something is wrong with my tang zhong?

    1. Hi Anthony! Thank you for visiting my blog. Sorry for my late response. I haven't been doing any update here as life has been a lot busier these days. Anyway, back to your question: purpose of "tang zhong" is softer texture with added elasticity, bread quality should last longer too. Have you noticed any difference in the two loaves after a few days?