|Jija Bread Rolls (Nigerian Pull Apart Bread)|
In Lagos state and some parts of Nigeria, the pull-apart rolls are known as''Ji-ja bread'' .
I remember the first time I saw this bread at my dad's bakery. As a kid I was fascinated by their pull apart shape and in no time, it replaced the usual Sandwich loaf, 'cos everyone just loved them.
So if you've ever wondered how these lovelies are made, here's how to make the Nigerian pull-apart bread rolls (Ji-ja bread), just as it is done in the bakeries,
but I'll be replacing the chemical additives with one of my favorite natural dough enhancer , known as Tangzhong .
For our highly rated Agege bread recipe, I made use of the Scalded flour'' method(see steps here) and to prove to you that the ''Tangzhong method'' works equally well, I'll be using it for this Ji-ja bread recipe.
*Check out our Agege bread recipe*
For the Dough enhancer
- 125ml Water
- 25 grams Flour(bread flour or normal plain flour)
(that is, 5 part water, to 1 part flour)
For the main Dough:
- 475grams Bread flour(Plain flour)
- 35grams Powdered milk
- 80gr sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 7g or 2 1/2 tsp instant dry yeast
- 1 egg, lightly beaten
- 130ml lukewarm water, adjust as needed
- 40g butter, at room temperature, cut into tiny cubes
If you're using evaporated milk(peak milk) , add 4 to 5 tablespoonful
**Please click here for how to make the dough enhancer(Tangzhong)**
Once you have prepared the dough enhancer you can go forward and make the bread.
|The dough enhancer(Tangzhong)|
1. In a wide bowl, sift in the flour and powdered milk.
Then add the sugar, salt and yeast. Mix together and then make a well in the center of the bowl and add the egg and water roux.
Mix well and gradually add the lukewarm water as you mix, and stop when you get a slightly sticky rough dough.
2. Hand knead the rough dough for about 20 minutes until it is soft and stretchy like pulled chewing gum. Then knead in the butter for 10 more minutes until well incorporated.
For my hand kneading I usually use the ''stretch, slap and fold method''(in this method the sticky dough is stretched, folded over itself, lifted up and thrown back down onto the table repeatedly until the dough is less sticky and elastic)... you'll need a scraper to help bring the sticky dough together while kneading.
The dough will be very sticky at first, but keep on kneading, and incorporating as little flour as possible. Too much flour will result in a hard bread. So resist the urge to add more flour.. use the scraper to remove sticky dough from your fingers.
But alternatively you can make use of a dough/ bread machine. Knead on medium speed for 30 minutes, using the dough hook , until you get a smooth and stretchy dough. If you have a food processor, knead the dough for 3 to 5 minutes and check the dough's elasticity every 20 to 30 seconds.
3. Now roll the stretchy(but slightly sticky) dough into a a ball, place in a large bowl that has been greased with butter or oil, cover with a foil or a cling wrap and leave to rise for 1 hour or until double in size.
5. Then mold each of the portions into small balls and place on a greased baking pan, cover with a cling wrap and let it rise again until it doubles in size, this takes about 1 hour depending on the weather.
6. About 10 minutes, before the rolls are fully risen, preheat oven for 8 minutes at 170C/ 335F , brush the rolls with egg wash and bake the jija bread for 20 minutes or until golden brown.
We love to hear from you, do leave us a comment and feedback if you try out this recipe. Stay tuned for Special bread loaf recipe and Onisha brown bread :)