Marble Taro Bread {Like 85C Degrees Bakery}

June 11, 2015

Author Notes: These huge buns aren't just for looks. They're here to entice any novice to Taiwanese and Asian pastries, and turn them into addicts. Super fluffy, milky, yeast bread with a touch of the Hokkaido Bread method which requires several proofing sessions, and some delicately sweetened taro marbled into the dough. Ellie Betzen

Makes: 6-8 buns of about 6 inches
Prep time: 4 hrs
Cook time: 50 min


Ingredients for milk bread {1st & 2nd proofing}

  • 3 cups bread flour
  • 1 teaspoon active dry yeast
  • 1/4 cup white sugar
  • 6 tablespoons melted unsweetened butter
  • 1/2 cup warm whipping cream
  • 1/2 cup warm water
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 egg white
  • 1 teaspoon active dry yeast (2nd proofing starts here)
  • 1 tablespoon white sugar
  • 1 egg white
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

Taro Filling and Top Crust Dough

  • 4 cups peeled and cubed raw taro***
  • water for boiling
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 2 tablespoons room temp butter
  • 1 cup all purpose flour (for water crust portion)
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3 tablespoons neutral flavored oil like safflower
  • 2-3 tablespoons cold water
  • 1 cup all purpose flour (for oil crust portion)
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup neutral flavored oil like safflower
  • 7 drops purple food coloring (or mix 5 blue+5 red)


Ingredients for milk bread {1st & 2nd proofing}

  1. Heat your oven to 150F (65.6 celsius). You will be using the oven at this temperature simply to place the dough on top in order to quicken the rise. In a stand mixer bowl with a dough hook attachment, mix the bread flour, yeast, and sugar thoroughly. Then add melted butter, warm cream+water, salt, and eggs. Turn up the motor to medium speed and knead until well mixed, scraping sides as needed. The dough should be very elastic and slightly sticky, but not to the point where you can't get it off your skin. Sprinkle flour if it's too wet. Form dough roughly into a uniform sphere and move it to another bowl. Cover with damp towel and place on top of 150F heated oven FOR ONE HOUR. If you choose to rest the dough much slower, you can place it on top of the fridge for about 2-3 hours. Meanwhile, move on to the other steps.
  2. Punch out the air out of the dough. Tear into six equal pieces and put back into the stand mixer bowl with a dough hook attachment. Add the yeast, sugar, egg white, and salt and knead until well incorporated and it's elastic and smooth. Cover with damp towel and let it rise in room temperature for 15 minutes, but it shouldn't double up in size fully, only to about 80-85% its fullness.

Taro Filling and Top Crust Dough

  1. ***When handling raw taro, always keep in mind that it contains toxic crystals that can eventually cause ailments and itchy skin. It's completely healthy and good for you when it's cooked, but do use gloves when handling.*** Once again, I recommend making the taro filling a day in advance to lighten up the work load. Boil the peeled and cubed taro in water with salt. It's fully cooked when it's mushy and easily mash-able. Drain the water and mash with sugar and butter. Set aside.
  2. For the topping of the bread, you will knead two different doughs, but it's simple so not to worry. Start with the water dough. In a mixing bowl, knead all the ingredients in the stated order. Make sure not to over mix. Then tear into 6 equal pieces and set aside.
  3. For the oil dough, mix the flour and salt in the stand mixer bowl with paddle attachment. You can do it by hand but it will be much harder to mix in the food coloring. Add the purple (or 5 drops blue+5 drops red) food coloring to the oil and mix as much as possible, keeping in mind the oil will make the colors trap in bubbles so they won't mix perfectly, but that's okay. Tear into six equal pieces. Place both doughs in the freezer until the yeast dough is ready. On a lightly floured surface, roll out each water dough into disks of about 5 inches in circumference. They won't be thin like dumpling skin--a bit thicker. Now form one purple oil dough into a ball and place it in the middle of one water dough disk. Wrap the disk and seal it around the purple dough completely. Sprinkle flour and roll it out into a thin oval. I had a hard time doing this because I was running out of time, but try to make it really thin. Roll the flattened out doughs into a cigar, cut in half lengthwise, place both parts on the surface with the spiral pattern upwards, and press them down. Again, roll each dough flat and repeat this process with the rest. Set aside.
  4. Now for assembling, Heat your oven to 350F (177C degrees). Tear the milk yeast dough into 12 equal pieces. Roll the pieces as big as possible. Spoon a good amount of taro filling onto one oval disk, leaving about 1/2 inch room on edges. Cover it with another oval disk and roughly seal them. Roll into a log and place one of the rolled out oil+water crust disks on top. Dust with flour lightly on top. Repeat this process with the rest and you should end up with 6 large buns. Bake for approximately 26-28 minutes or until the yeast dough is lightly golden and springy. Enjoy straight out of the oven! Later wrap with plastic wrap and refrigerate, then serve heated slightly. Keep in mind taro can go rancid quicker than it looks. Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

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Reviews (4) Questions (0)

4 Reviews

Kat M. July 10, 2016
First of all, thank you for the recipe! It's awesome to be able to bake this when I don't have the ability to buy it. I'm trying to figure out what the top dough is for though. I've made it, but it was so dry and crumbly, and I'm missing what I'm meant to do with it? It seems like you just take the first milk dough, put the taro in the middle (which came out perfect, if not a little chunky) and then bake it. I'm just trying to figure out what the second dough's are for?
Author Comment
Ellie B. July 11, 2016
Ohhhh I'm so excited and delighted to know you've made it, Kat! Thank you for that :) Okay so I apologize if the directions weren't clear enough; it's such a long recipe I might have struggled a bit there. ;P The top dough is pretty much like a very very flattened out taro mooncake which is of Chinese (?) or Taiwanese origin. It's supposed to be like a "casing" that goes over the top of the bun, and the final result should be like a very fine, crispy, pie-like layer, contrasting the soft, fluffy taro bread. Does that make sense? <br /><br />And the "oil dough" which is part of the top crust is actually supposed to be kind of dry, crumbly, and weird to the touch! I was surprised too at first and freaked out while making it, but the point is for that crumbly and grainy dough to be folded and rolled out with the "water dough", which would then result in a buttery, flaky crust with distinct fine layers of pie-like goodness. And it does feel wrong when making it at first, but that is to be expected. If it's too much, you can obviously omit this and just go to town with the taro bun, hah! But I prefer those flaky swirls on top because I happen to love contrast. <br /><br />So all in all, I'm hoping everything else came out well?! :D Thanks for asking and giving me something to think about when writing recipes!
Kat M. July 11, 2016
That makes more sense now! I just skipped it that time around and made some simple buns, but it is delicious! I'll have to be a little more patient next time to get that flakey top! This is my favorite bread ever, so I am so stoked to get this right! Thank you again, you're awesome!
Author Comment
Ellie B. July 11, 2016
I'm so so glad you loved it and I feel giddy inside! :) Let me know if you need more suggestions but you should be okay, I believe. I don't know if it'll help you, but I have included a few pictures in my original post on my blog which might create a better visual for you. Have a blessed day!