Wednesday, 7 November 2007

Pork Floss Loaf with Cheese toppings

I was pleasantly surprised to receive comments from a blog visitor, MH, that she has been baking the milk loaf with great success. She had even tried adding pandan juice to the recipe. This prompted me that I should go ahead with the idea of turning it into a matcha green tea loaf...something which I had in mind for quite sometime. However, I realised that my boy, who happens to be my main target 'audience' may not like green tea in his bread. He will much prefer a pandan loaf, but I don't have any pandan essence or a blender to make the pandan juice. So I thought I should just fill the loaf with some pork floss since he always choose the pork floss buns whenever we get breads from the nearby bakery shop.

Having attempted to make a pullman bread using this recipe without much success (as it didn't reach the top of the tin), I decided that I should make a 'mountain-shape' loaf. I added some grated mozzarella cheese and some dried parsley on the top to add some flavour.

I used my bread machine to knead the dough so that I could use the time to prepare lunch. I set the machine to the Dough function, and let it knead for the fixed timing of 20mins. At the end of the cycle, I stopped the machine, re-started it and let it knead for another 20mins. The dough was still quite sticky after 40mins. I suspected either I have added a little too much egg or I would have over knead it. I guess, 30mins of kneading should be just right. Nevertheless, I left it to rise in room temperature and was very pleased to see that it had double in bulk within an hour.

After punching down the dough, I gave it a few kneading...but to my horror, the dough became sticky again! Since I have already gone to this stage, I went ahead and tried my best to flatten the dough with my fingers and topped the surface with pork floss. I had to use a spatula to help scrape the dough from the work surface and slowly rolled it up, swiss-roll style. I left it in my pullman tin, and let it proof for the second time. I was initially quite skeptical that this bread would ever rise, as the dough simply didn't look right. The surface wasn't smooth and was very blemish. I didn't even have the mood to take a photo of it! To my surprise, after an hour, it reach to the top of the tin looking as though it would burst through the cling wrap any time. This was despite the gloomy and cool weather yesterday. I remembered the other time the same dough took at least 2 hours to double in bulk during the second proofing.

I brushed the top with the left over egg (the recipe uses less than one egg), and covered it with grated cheese and send it into the oven. I knew for sure the top will get burnt, as such, when the cheese started to brown (within 10mins) I covered the top with foil and let it bake till the required time. I was so glad that the bread turned up so tall! This is the 'tallest' bread I have ever made. The top was overly brownish, but the sides were browned to a nice golden brown. As the cheese got stuck to the side of the tin, I had to use a knife to go around it to get the bread out of the pullman tin.

I hardly could wait to slice the bread to check on the inside. I must say this recipe is truly amazing! Thanks to the originator for sharing such a wonderful recipe. The bread was very airy, soft, and cottony! I tasted one slice while it was still warm....yummy!

The bread remain soft the next day, and I only kept it in a plastic bag. My boy told me the bread was very soft, and he even ate the crust too. He would usually leave behind a square rim of crust whenever he eats a sandwich loaf. My better half liked it too but told me to add more pork floss next time ;)

If you are keen to give this bread a try, I have got some tips here:

Tip 1: As the top of the loaf is rather soft, you may not want to dent it while removing it from the tin/loaf pan. So, when turning the bread out from the tin, place the tin on its side and slowly shake and ease the loaf be careful of the hot tin!

Tip 2: Due to the cheese toppings, it was kind of difficult to slice through the top crust from the top, ie with the loaf standing upright. The crust was very thin, and I almost squashed the entire loaf ;p I learned that it is much easier to slice it by placing the loaf on it's side.

Hope this helps :)


Anonymous said...

Dear HHB,

It's been a while since my last comments, I could see you've been enjoying your homemade bread, so am I, I'm now so into breadmaking,
(it's all your fault, LOL).Natural grape yeast is my current "project",will let u know how it turns out cos it will be only ready by tomorrow.Back to this bread, is indeed a "tall" loaf with just 250g flour, btw,did you add bread improver? the stickyness could be due to the milk used seems more than usual req. I've tried recipe using 50% of liquid & still able to turn into a "springy" loaf.


Small Small Baker said...

Yumyum... this looks really delicious! Can I have 1 piece? :p

The Health Conscious Shopper said...

wah, HHB,
you should open a shop man! all your goodies look, well, like goodies!! do u thik this time round the extra kneading contribued to the great rise? i am just wondering if the sticky dough equals great rise and soft bread? and am thinking how much longer i have to knead esp since i hand=knead! :)

En Loves to Write said...

Hi, really enjoy reading yr post. The write-ups are always so audience friendly. Could see that you really wanna to share. Thanks...

Hv tried the hokkaido milk loaf and baked rice and they all turned out great. Thanks again and keep writing.

Happy Homebaker said...

Hi Yvonne, really you have advanced to making natural yeast! I have seen it in cookbooks, but thought it will be very troublesome! Looking forward to hearing from you on your success =)

Hi Small Small Baker, yes you can have one, as I am left with 2 pieces ;D

Canton Pixie, I am not sure, there could be 3 reasons to the sticky dough (1. too much egg, 2. too much milk, 3. over knead). I don't think the extra kneading contributed to the rise, as over kneading is not a good thing too. I am quite sure sticky dough doesnt equals to great rise and soft bread. The bread texture is soft due to the combination of ingredients used...but recipes with eggs, butter, tend to give a softer bread. Actually if you are making by hand, don't pour in the liquid (milk) all at once, leave a small amount, and adjust accordingly. A well kneaded dough should become smooth and elastic and will not stick onto the work surface. I'll probably try make this bread by hand the next time to get a feel.

Arty Aunty, thanks for your encouraging words :) Glad to hear that you like the hokkaido milk loaf and the baked rice recipe =)

En Loves to Write said...


just to check...

I baked the hokkaido milk loaf using the bread machine. It came out really soft but the crust (the sides) are very hard. However, when i look at yr pics, i found the sides of yr bread look soft. Do you know why mine was so hard... the top was nicely browned

Anonymous said...


Totally agree with Arty Aunty, you really make your readers want to leave the pc and start baking.

Guess what, I just came back from Carrefour with a breadmaker, going to do the Hokkaido Milky loaf later. Wish me luck.

Happy Homebaker said...

Hi Arty Aunty, the sides of the loaf should not be hard, the crust of this recipe should be thin and soft. Which crust setting did you use? I usually set mine as 'Light' so that the crust will not be too brown. I do notice that the bread machine gives darker crust as the pan is of the dark non-stick material which tend to transfer heat too fast. The best pans to use for bakings are those made with aluminimum, which conducts heat more evenly. Sorry, I seems to digress ;')

Hi ek, thanks for your kind comments :) Hmmm, I do hope you get to bake a loaf of bread tonight, as you'll need to clean the breadmaker and 'tune' it before the first use. I am looking forward to hearing about your bread. Happy Baking =)

En Loves to Write said...


thanks. mabbe i should buy a bread pan too :)

Aimei said...


Your bread looks so yummy...hehe. My favourite type, with floss and cheese...Like those 'earthquake' loaf i bought from those bakeries. :)

Mandy said...

this looks really enticing! I am thinking of making breads myself ever since the weather cooled down. It feel soo good to be eating homemade bread.

Anonymous said...

Wow! your bread looks golden! I also noticed that this bread was sticky after kneading and proving!. What I do is after kneading in a mixer, I take it out, slightly flour the work table and work into a ball before proving! I can't remember whether it was still sticky or not after proving,sorry:( shall try next week and see how. MH

sweet-tooth said...

mmm! looks so yummy! ;D

Anonymous said...

YUMMY! Looks so good! Wish I had a bread maker but right now I'm broke so I'm gonna have to wait till the sales. Love the stuff you bake and your photos are great too! Your blog has really helped me with ideas of what to bake.

Get up the good work! ^^

Dr. Chang said...


I was wondering if you could help translate the ingredients needed for this bread. I wish I could read Chinese, but alas I was born and raised in US and my Chinese is limited to 1st grade level. I would love to make this bread. Thank you so much!

Happy Homebaker said...

Hi Aimei, I have not tried the earthquake loaf, but I am sure those from bakeries should taste better :)

Hi Mandy, I can imagine the smell of fresh bread in your kitchen, especially on a cool winter day. I had experience staying in LA for a couple of months from the fall to the winter seasons. The weather was wonderful, but I have not been to the areas near to your place.

Hi MH, thanks! I didn't use any flour as I was always to lazy to clean up the mess. What I usually did was to shape the dough on a plastic place mat. Most dough would not stick onto the place mat after the first rise, but this one was still sticky. But it was worth the extra effort :) Do let me know if you come up with other flavour/versions =)

Hi sweet-tooth, thanks!

Hi Jen, you can always make the bread by hand :) If I have time to spare, I usually prefer to knead the dough by hand.

Joann, I had posted the recipe in English, please look for the link "milk loaf" in this posting, alternative, look for it under the side bar, 'My Bread Basket'. Happy Baking :)

Anonymous said...


I did not manage to bake the Hokkaido milk loaf on Wed night, after putting the ingredients into the machine, I went on to start it but the blade does not move. I waited for sometime, and then took out the ingredients thinking that I have made a mistake in the measurement, so I redo it. Again the blade fail to rotate, I then conclude that the bread maker could be faulty, although the "bake" mode is working fine.

I got it change yesterday and try again in the evening. This time around, everything is different; I could hear and see it working.

My loaf is not as beautiful as yours, it's darker at the bottom, and do you know what could have caused it? (I use 'sweet' mode and took it out when it beep) Overall it's very soft except there seems to be a small circle throughout the loaf which seems wetter, not fluffy. Any idea what's the cause. Despite the faults, I think this is the nicest bread I've eaten, very please with myself, and thank you so much. Will try it again this evening. Sorry so lengthy.

Happy Homebaker said...

Hi ek, no worries, I am very much more long-winded than you ;p

I am not sure which brand you have bought, mine is the Bluesky, Carrefour's housebrand. Anyway, I always set my crust setting as 'Light' so that the loaf will not be so brown. I also select the smaller loaf size. If you are also using the same bread machine, you will notice that the heating element is at the bottom, so the bottom of the loaf will get more heat than the rest, causing it to be darker than the rest. As for the small circles, I have not encountered this problem before. It seems like the dough was not baked throughly? Did you add in the ingredients in the right sequence? You will have to add in the wet ingredients before adding the dry ingredients into the pan. But some machines will be the other way round. I hope you get a better result this evening :) looking forward to hearing good news from you!

Anonymous said...


Visiting your blog has become my daily ritual - something that I look forward to, and enjoy with my cup of morning coffee.

Thought I should let you know that I am appreciate all your effort in sharing your experiences about baking, especially bread-making (something that I just picked up, and am 100% addicted).

You are so sincere, and never selfish in sharing information. Three cheers to you!!!

I tried many of your bread recipes, all with great success;
- milk loaf
- butter loaf
- pumpkin bread
- raisin loaf
- sweet buns
- wholemeal, walnut and raisins (my fav)

Oh, when I made the milk loaf yesterday, I mixed softened butter with minced garlic, parsley and oregano, spread the mixture on the dough, then sprinkled some parmesan before I rolled it up. It was delicious!

Once again, thanks for "Happy Home Baking", continue the good work, and don't ever stop blogging.

Do have a great day ahead.

Warmest Regards,

Happy Homebaker said...

Hi Celine, thanks so much for your kind words and encouragment =D
There are many talented bakers out there who have been sharing their experiences generously and they are really far far better than me! I could only write whatever little experience and knowledge I have in the area of baking :)

Glad to hear that you like those bread recipes :) and thanks for adding another great idea to the milk loaf! I will love to try it! Did you use fresh parsley and oregano? It sounds so good!

Anonymous said...

Yes, I use fresh parsley and oregano. It was awesome! We finished the entire loaf over breakfast and lunch.

sherlyn said...

*sigh* a pity I do not hv bread machine and you stay so far from me, otherwise, i can hv nice bread for breakfast too.

Happy Homebaker said...

Hi Sherlyn, you can always make bread by hand. I started off making bread by hand...but you do need the arm power :) If you a heavy duty stand alone mixer that comes with a dough hook, you can also knead the bread using the mixer.

Anonymous said...

been a while since i last visited your blog & its filled with wonderful breads! may i ask your breadmachine brand? am still comtemplating to get one..

Happy Homebaker said...

Hi Xan, thanks for popping by :)
I got my bread machine from Carrefour. It's under their housebrand, Bluesky, at slightly less than S$70.00. It's not a fancy machine, but comes with all the basic function. Hope this helps :)

Anonymous said...

okie. Tks.

Anonymous said...

Thanks, made this today.Yummilicious but......
Haha I made a few blunders.Most of the time the dough I made is so sticky that I'm unable to roll and flatten.Today's was very good,not sticky so was very happy and divide into 3 portions before adding the pork floss and rolled up.
When I sliced the loaf, I couldnt see any pork floss whorls.In fact the 1st slice has no floss at all!
I realise that I should have tear into 3 pieces and slice the other way round instead.
The other thing was that, the dough was already same height as the tin before adding in the mozarella cheese.The foil(for preventing crust too burnt) stuck to the melted cheese.The loaf didnt look good after I tore away the foil.:(
Some of the melted cheese flowed down the sides of the loaf tin.What a sight. :P
But the bread was very soft and tasty.
Do you think the cheese can be spread on top of the pork floss instead? I find that the cheese was rather hard and chewy when put on top of the loaf.

Happy Homebaker said...

Hi Vien, for loaf bread with fillings, it's not advisable to divide the dough into 3 portions, otherwise the swirl will not 'appear' when u slice the loaf. I usually make a single portion if I want to add fillings. I am not sure about adding mozarella cheese with the fillings...I have not tried it. You may want to take a look at Celine's version (see her earlier comments in this posting). Sounds so delicious!

Oh yes, cheese will stick to you can try cover with a parchment paper followed by a foil.

Anonymous said...

Hi Happy Homebaker,

You didnt mention how you put the pork floss. Is it before the 2nd proofing ?

Your blogs are all very inspiring... thanks very much.


Happy Homebaker said...

Hi Ling, yes, I added the pork floss after the first proof, then roll it to leave in the pan for the 2nd proof.

moomoo said...

hey happy home baker,
I baked this loaf today! It's my first attempt making bread... My bread has a slightly stronger yeast smell after it has baked. May i know what's the problem causing this? thank youu~ :)

Happy Homebaker said...

Hi the attention seeker,
I am not too sure what's the root cause, but it could be due to:
- under baking;
- the dough could be left to rise/proof at too high a temperature (best temp is around 28degC), and so the dough rise too quickly;
- dough is not well kneaded;
- over-proofing, dough left to rise/proof beyond recommended time.

REDbaxton said...

hi HHB,
i baked your tea cookies recently, and my kids love it. thanks to you for sharing..
and now i'm back to find bread with floss... because my kids seem so love them, they always choose the floss bread in bread store, so i wanna try yours again.... thanks, and i hope i will make it :D

Anonymous said...

Do you happen to still have the recipe for this loaf? Tried clicking on the link but the web page isn't there anymore.

Happy Homebaker said...

Hi ST, you can try the recipe which I have adapted, see here:
hope this helps :)