I like the texture of Hawaiian rolls but not the sugar. I found this recipe, tried it yesterday, and am happy to report it’s exactly that: Hawaiian roll like texture with a fraction of sweetness.
I did a little bit of research and I’m guessing that what we view as “Hawaiian rolls” was probably a modification of the Japanese milk bread to begin with. This bread, known as Hokkaido milk bread, was created in Japan using tang zhong, a traditional Chinese starter for buns, which utilizes milk or water mixed with a small amount of flour. Surprisingly, this recipe doesn’t add flour to the milk, and now I am wondering if that should’ve been a thing.
A note: they are baking this at 350 for 20 minutes. My baking time had to be adjusted to 30 minutes. I think that the house might have been a bit too cold and my second proofing didn’t go as well, so the bread was slightly denser. Or maybe it’s my oven.
I was going to take pretty pictures for you, but once the bread was sampled, it was immediately declared the best bread I ever made, and I only got this pic before it got eaten.
Bread is my kryptonite! I try to avoid it because I just eat it all. With butter!
But this looks good. We’ll have to try it this weekend!
Hope your weekend is peaceful!
Mine too! I enjoy butter way too much and on fresh, hot bread… shudders in delight!
???? that’s the happy place for me too.
Looks yummy! Bread must be on the menu as I have a recipe from Pinterest in my oven right now called “Simple Sweet Bread”.
My daughter texted me from upstairs and asked if I was baking and I said maybe. I then told her what I was baking and she said “Dibs” ????.
Happy Friday – hope everyone has a safe Halloween ????
Timothy Lorance says
Several years ago I bought a folding bread proofer on Amazon it can proof two full size loaf pans at a time. It lets you control temperature and has a water tray to add humidity.
It eliminates the cold room issue. The maker is Brod & Taylor it is no longer available on Amazon but the maker’s website still offers it.
Karen the Griffmom says
Have one and can vouch for its effectiveness! I can set the temp control to offset the warmth/chill in my kitchen. It’s also available from King Arthur Flour.
Yes! Thanks for the tip!
I have the same one. It is great. Before I got it I had the worst time getting dough to rise. I also use it to make vegan yogurt – keeps it at the ideal 110F to culture. ????
It is $170, a bit pricey, but if you make dough / yogurt a lot it is worth it. I’ve had mine for years.
If you want to try something with that lovely fluffy texture and a bit more flavor, I highly recommend the butterflake herb loaf: https://www.kingarthurbaking.com/recipes/butterflake-herb-loaf-recipe
There’s nothing as good as homemade bread!
I love KAF. My favourite banana bread of all time is their whole wheat version. I add a tsp of penzeys cake spice but otherwise dont change anything.
Lynn Thompson says
Thank you , Ilona Andrews, for the post. Will go great with chili i am making in crockpot. I appreciated the video you found. I am a lot messier than demo person thou.
Hot rolls with honey and fresh butter. Hmm. Like manna from heaven in my house. Thank you for suggestion.
Actually, Hawaiian Sweet Bread is based off of Portuguese Sweet Bread. And modified in Hawaii. In Hawaii, we eat a lot of Portuguese foods. The Portuguese were sailors and there is a lot of their influence still in the islands. We eat a lot of Portuguese sausage, and it’s a staple for breakfast there.
So strange that you mention the Portuguese influence in Hawaii. I was just reading an article yesterday about how the ukulele was actually a variation on the four-stringed Portuguese braguinha brought to the islands by Portuguese sailors. They didn’t know how to play it; they probably brought it as a gift to the Hawaiian royalty. And just look what the Hawaiians have done with it!
I know when I research the Portuguese, I’m amazed at how far reaching their influence is. They were everywhere, had extensive colonies, and shipping routes. I read that they have found archeological evidence that the peninsula was inhabited by Celts. It was eye opening looking into it.
Oh another thought, the Portuguese were among the first people to have a trade agreement with Japan. So I wonder if the Milk Bread is based upon the Portuguese bread?
The Japanese got the word “arigato” from the Portuguese “abrigado.” Those sailors got around…
Hooray for this. Trader Joe’s sells some milk rolls that are so good I can the whole bag in a day. I want to try this!
This looks great and relatively easy.
I think I have a pan that would be the right size.But I don’t bake. And my oven is very, very old. So, no baking.
But I always appreciate your food recipes. And the food photos that accompany theInnkeeper chapters.
I miss the Friday snippets.
One week, we get Vala trees, or trays of fruits artfully arranged. Then we have, Dina’s dog, or sketches of the innkeeper. And then OMG, Arland!
Thank you for the wonderful tales.
Thank you for all the extras.
Happy Halloween ???? !!
Mar Ovalles says
Between the British Bake Off shows and the Japanese TV Series – Midnight Diner – Tokyo Stories, I have been eating a lot of Japanese influenced foods. I might even get a Japanese omelette pan. I am now attempting to make this bread, but I may just buy it; there is a Daiso store close by – Japanese Yen store where most items are $1.50, and they sell Hokkaido buns in different flavors. Yes – slightly sweet and super soft!
I also use a hokkaido bread recipe! Mine is from King Arthur Flour and it’s the perfect thing for making homemade sausage rolls as well as soft dinner rolls. Everyone who’s had one begs for more.
Ill look for it. I have to say that unlike my children i would rather follow a written recipe
Me too. Love to go through cookbooks. Internet? Meh.
This looks wonderful! We love Hawaiian rolls. Usually only have them for holidays. For home made bread I bake a bread recipe passed down through my family called Hill Climbers Bread. It takes 3 hours to make and is a denser bread hearty enough to get you up a mountain. (Betting that’s where the name came from)????
I’m going to surprise the family and make a new bread! Thanks for the recipe!
Bryn Thenell says
This looks delicious! Thank you. It might be my Saturday morning project…yum.
Stacy McKnight says
The best comment on food is that it is snarfed before the glamour shot has time to occur.
Yum, I love bread. This one looks de-lish.
Yummy! I love baking bread.
As a long time baker I suggest you check out the King Arthur Baking web site. They have blogs on milk bread, tangzhong, and all things baking related. Tangzhong involves cooking the flour with the milk and cooling before adding to the dough. I think it doesn’t change the flavor, just the texture. Bon appetit!
Colleen C. says
I follow Emmymade on Facebook and she just made something like this. It looks yum and I like less sugar.
Steph Fleming says
Have you tried Scottish Morning Rolls? Really rather good, something about the milk in mixture.
There’s a cinnamon roll recipe that uses a milk bread recipe and I feel like it’s the best cinnamon roll recipe ever! I prefer my cinnamon rolls softer so I love it but my sister thinks its just ok.
Mary Peed says
I live on an island in lake superior. It’s seldom really warm here. My bread rises in one of my ovens with the light on. That keeps it warm enough to rise but not too hot or drafty. My grandmother insisted it was the draft that killed the yeast… I don’t know, I’ve managed to kill yeast several ways but I still try to keep rising bread out of the cold and draft.
I found I was killing yeast by using liquids that were too warm. I bought a candy thermometer and haven’t had a problem since.
Warm homemade bread with butter and brown sugar, and hot cocoa. Yum!! The best winter Saturday night supper when I was a kid!
How the generational view changed: the 1930’s – my mother and her sibs begged their mom (my grandma) for store-bought bread; the 1970’s – My sibs and I begged our mom for homemade bread.
In Eastern Europe, we add filling to this dough (cocoa, sugar, ground walnuts and turkish delight or dried fruits) and we eat the brioche for Christmas and Easter. I think it’s weird to add sugar to bread, but I know that’s a thing in North America.
Right, right, we have this in my country too (also Eastern Europe), and it tastes even better with a cup of warm milk. 🙂
But yeah, our usual bread is flour and water and yeast and a bit of salt; when my brother traveled to St. Kitts, the breakfast buffet at the hotel had all these types of American bread, and he was so perplexed that he couldn’t find one single type of non-sweet bread among them (the sweet bread tasted unnatural to him as he wasn’t used to it; I’m sure many Americans would feel the same now about non-sweet bread).
Personally, I wish I could eat sweet bread daily, but alas, my body doesn’t mesh well with sweet stuff, and even a bit of sugar just leads to more sugar cravings for me…
Looks yummy. Is there a special name for it?
I learned how to make pita bread from Cook’s Country on PBS last week and it came out great. The stuff in the stores is so bland, but CC’s recipe was easy even though there were a lot of steps to do. It doesn’t stay fresh for long but we made little pizzas and it was tasty and fun to prepare with the kids.
I’ve done a lot of baking since March 17 2020 and have the extra pounds to prove it!
My dad used to bake a lot of bread, and he said that the more thoroughly you knead the bread, the easier it is to avoid dense bread.
Jennifer Hernandez says
I recommend making milk bread rolls at Thanksgiving. Use the leftover rolls, turkey and dressing to make the worlds best sandwiches the next couple days. You won’t regret it. Everyone fights over the leftover milk bread sandwiches at our house.
Ha. I bet. When I make stuffing sandwiches, my husband says, “You do realize you just made a bread sandwich, don’t you?” I’m glad someone else puts stuffing in sandwiches.
cynthia Anderson says
I just saw to proof put in your dishwasher right after you empty.
Valerie S. says
I love Milk Bread – it has been one of my #covidbaking staples although I’m on a sourdough/Bagel kick right now. I like the NYT recipe and use my Pullman Pan (not the long skinny ones) to make a perfectly square loaf that fits pre-sliced cheese perfectly. My brother refers to it as “Brutalist” bread, but it’s excellent. I don’t love the sweeter Hawaiian rolls, but the texture on this bread is perfect. We’re fortunate in the Portland Metro area to have Korean, Vietnamese, and Japanese bakeries, which all do slightly different variations. Thanks for sharing this post 🙂 Have a very happy halloween!
Also! If anyone happens to have a good Khachapuri recipe that you’d be willing to share, I’d love to try that. I fell in love with it when I was in Russia last year, was planning on going to Georgia this year, and then COVID. 🙁
NYT recipe: https://cooking.nytimes.com/recipes/1016275-japanese-milk-bread?action=click&module=Local%20Search%20Recipe%20Card&pgType=search&rank=1
Such a timely post. My new bread machine (number 5 in a line of used until they died predecessors) has a “Milk Bread” cycle. I had never heard of it and have been researching online to see what it is. Now, I will have to try it out. Thanks.
Ashli McBee says
Yessss, Hokkaido milk bread! I taught English in rural Hokkaido for five years, and I loved getting milk bread with school lunches. Thursdays were bread days so we got it pretty often. It’s delicious warm and briefly dipped in milk.
I use the tang zhong method for hot cross buns at Easter and they are amazingly soft and fluffy
Patricia Schlorke says
I make a standard roll recipe from Fanny Farmer’s cookbook, that is a family heirloom. I use bread flour, but all purpose flour can be used.
The recipe only uses a tablespoon of sugar. That’s mainly for the yeast to grow. I also use it for pizza dough when I feel like making homemade pizza.
I’ve also been watching YouTube videos on milk bread. I’ve been craving char Sui bao and no place to buy it where I live so I’m gonna make my own! Yours looks delicious ????
Oh man. That sounds great. I think bao are generally steamed. We can get the frozen ones here, but due to COVID all of our best dim sum places are closed. 🙁
I want the bread, but I really, really want the scrapey thing she had that she mixed with. Anyone know what it’s called?
Just a plastic bowl scraper. I prefer my metal bench scraper, but I also generally knead in my stand mixer.
Sara Weiss says
I love milk bread. We have a bakery here, so I’ve never made it. I might try.
What’s the equivalent English flour to all purpose flour? Plain flour, self raising or strong white flour?
Ruth Ray says
The British plain flour has less gluten (softer) than American all purpose. Strong flour is their version of bread flour. Self-raising is what American calls self-rising.
I wonder if White Lily Flour (a silky low-protein, low-gluten flour made with soft red winter wheat that is typically grown and sold in the Southern US states) would be an equivalent to British plain flour.
The mention of tangzhong reminded me of this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x2GWOHcEBcM
A very fun series on cooking and science, I highly recommend!
Milk bread is a northern England thing, the loafs a usually cylindrical and it’s yummy…
Ummm, bread. 🙂
Theodore D. says
This is what happens when you make something tasty! 😀
Actually, I believe it’s descended from Portugese Sweet Bread. I lived in Hawaii for awhile and have the recipe from a Portugese-American roommate. Yummy. But, yes, sugar.
Laura Settle says
Kindred, a restaurant in Davidson NC, has amazing milk bread, my mom has had success copying it with this recipe https://food52.com/recipes/39343-kindred-s-milk-bread
Christina Wilson says
This is going to be the next bread recipe I try!
When in my quarantine baking frenzy ans trying hard to waste nothing I found left over milk bread makes excellent French toast!
Ruth Ray says
Have you tried proofing brad with an Instapot? https://cookingwithkarli.com/proofing-bread-in-instant-pot/
Ruth Ray says
Bread. I think brad won’t fit.
I was just wondering about this when I read a comment earlier about using a proofer to make yogurt. I thought that if a proofer could make yogurt, then surely a yogurt maker could proof? I briefly heat my oven, then shut it off to proof, but, well,….. ???? I’ve forgotten to shut it off before. ????♀️ (My dream feature on an oven is a proof setting, but I’m holding on to mine as long as I can.) I’ll have to try that in my Pot. Thanks for sharing! ????
I’ve never understood why there is so much ‘unnecessary’ sugar in bread. Even supposed healthy bread.
Because sugar is cheap and yummy; it makes people addicted, and drives people to eat much more (sugar-laden) food than they need for satiety. People will buy more and more stuff that has sugar in it, which is what the food industry was aiming at all along–greater profit margins. And when people become fat and sick, the profits start rolling in for great pharma as well.
Look up the “Fed Up” documentary. Apart from that, it’s just an issue of following the money.
This looks so good. I made Irish Soda Bread today. I’m going to toast some for breakfast tomorrow. Now I want this bread. Sigh. I don’t have the best control around bread. Especially warm, homemade bread. Thank you for the recipe.
I call that brioche ! Breads, in my definition have not eggs or milk in it.
And I totally love brioche.
But brioche is a bread? ????????♀️
I’ve been hearing about milk bread off and on for a couple of months now and have been considering making it. I normally make sourdough rolls, but I think I will try the milk bread as well.
Marcia Sundquist says
Japanese milk bread makes me long for the sugar toast (https://cookpad.com/recipe/1042722) in the bakeries there. It should be so simple to make, if only I had the right milk bread. I think another similar milk bread recipe from this YouTube channel looks about right (https://youtu.be/8jeaPL73sUU). Maybe I’ll finally make some of my own before going back to Japan for work (12/2 with much trepidation), so thanks for the inspiration!
I find the bread standard to be good in Japan. Even the average bakery croissant is flakier and crisper than the slightly doughy thing I find at American groceries. Maybe a dinner roll in croissant shape?
Hoping Japan can keep numbers low through the winter and you can enjoy all the wonderful seasonal foods.
Totally trying this! I love new bread recipes to try.
This recipe doesn’t have a Tangzhong roux (milk and flour heated and let cool before adding) which will keep the bread moist.
This recipe works well either using a stand mixer or bread machine on dough cycle. Have used this dough as bread, rolls, cinnamon buns and stick buns.
Recently got a new oven with a proofing setting but before that would always proof in the oven with the light on especially on cold days.
Another one for you to try.
Kelly B says
Yes! I love Hawaiian roll texture and could not replicate at home! I must try this!
The bread looks delicious, so I really want to make it right now, and the recipe seems simple enough, however I would like to take a moment and point out the comments on the video. They just made my day
Lee Cahow says
Another good way to proof dough is to run your dryer on high for a few minutes utes, turn it off and place the pan(s) of dough inside and shut the door. The dryer warmth works nicely and frees up the oven while the dough is rising.
Nancy Upchurch says
Actually, ‘Hawaiian’ bread is Portuguese sweet bread. Very sad when King’s sold out to that mainland bakery. And yes, it not only has sugar in it, but a good one has potato, too.
Judy Schultheis says
I’d call the response you got a win, picture or no.
As a child I lived on Hokkaido for a couple of years. We lived in Chitose. Father was U. S. Army. I remember a few things, but not much about the food. I would love to try this bread.
First of all thanks for the recipe. I am a big fan of King Arthur Flour too! They are also happy to help you with baking questions.
To proof bread I just heat a cup of water in the microwave to boiling and then place my bread into the warm moist microwave. Simple and most people have a microwave.
Thank you so much for sharing!
THANK YOU! I’ve never made bread before and was looking for a good recipe ????
Bread and dip are my “will eat everything in the house” foods. Right now I’m actually losing weight for the first time in 20 years, so….*sigh*….no bread. But please don’t delete this post! One day I’ll be at goal weight and I’ll come back. Looks so good!!
Or for me to who should be loosing weight but is baking more since I’m home all day even though working, and can take the time to let it rise multiple times!!! Usually takes too long during the week for me!!
Quarantine bread weight gain ????and other baking lol
Elevation can also impact baking. So someone baking at a higher elevation than someone at sea level will have different results. So it was probably also a factor, on top of the recent Texas cold snap.
This is true! Hawaiian bread isn’t Hawaiian. But the concept is a mix of many different cultures taken to an extreme level from plantation days. There was a lot of Japanese influence on the plantations. Then the Filipino and Polynesian cultures made changes and made their own versions. (I am a Kama aina haole (sp) who lives on Oahu and who’s husband is a trained chef who is actually working as a pool guy, but who has lots of irrelevant facts regarding local food!)
Syd Harper says
House Andrews Cook Book! How wonderful to have all the yummy recipes you have in your books! Have a separate section for each! Just for fun?
Robin Coots says
Oooh! I’ve done milk bread before, but only once. I love it for how soft and fluffy it is!
This looks amazing! I’m definitely going to give it a try! Thanks!!
My Yemeni kitchen on YouTube!
My husband is from Egypt and he found these… so easy to alter The recipient too!! He likes them with more sugar, several times I completely forgot the eggs and they came out fine so now I don’t use them except to brush before baking, lol.
I also started brushing them with jam or Nutella inside the before rolling it up and that comes out great too! Love all the bread on her YouTube site… and some of the other recipes too
Cory John says
Thank you!! I’m excited to try this. My son loves Hawaiian rolls.
in my house, no pics would have been taken, other than as piles of crumbs.
I tried a loaf of Japanese milk bread at the local farmer’s market. I thought it was pretty good. The recipe I read was more work than I was willing to do in the heat of the Texas summer, so maybe I will try a recipe in the winter.
Thanks for the recipe. It looks yummy ????
Dayle Benningfield says
K D says
I love milk bread, so fluffy! I was just thinking about making some tomorrow when I have the time. I’ve seen people use it for making cinnamon rolls too, though I haven’t tried that myself.
I’ve bought milk bread from a bakery inside an Asian food store. It was like white bread on steroids. I grew up eating whole wheat, so white bread seems processed to me, milk bread even more so. So white and soft and fluffy and processed. Processed to an almost ominous degree.
Kai Hsiao says
I’ve heard that the difference in milk bread between here and japan comes down to the mineral composition of the water.
Need some yeast then I’m trying this recipe, thanks!
Angelika Monkberg says
This is exactly the recipe my German grandmother did all her life – what I do every now and then. Sometimes we divide the dough into 4 strings and braid them. Just like Challah. Which tells you at the same time, in Germany this kind of bread is a breakfast treat and often eaten with butter and every possible kind of confiture. Or even Nutella
The Goodreads Choice Awards of 2020 just began, and I was distraught to see that Emerald Blaze is not listed as a nominee for either Best Fantasy or Best Romance. I voted for it as a write-in candidate in both categories. The top five write-ins are added to the list of nominations in the second round of voting, so I encourage fellow members of the Book Devouring Horde to go vote! I think Emerald Blaze is amazing even without the Goodreads Choice Award recognition. However, I often find suggestions of what to read through these nominations, so let’s inform others of how great Ilona Andrews books are in case they don’t know yet! https://www.goodreads.com/choiceawards/best-fantasy-books-2020
I think the Hawaiian sweet bread is actually a variation of Portuguese sweet bread, which is a variation of the French brioche. I agree that it’s too sweet, so I like it with less sugar too.
Your break looks delicious, and I’m also a big fan of Hokkaido milk bread. During the beginning of the pandemic, I started baking a lot. For me, depression=baking. It’s just soothing and the smell of bread makes me happy,
Helen Burgess says
In the subject of sugar in bread, Ireland has ruled the Subway bread has too much sugar in it to be called bread. It’s something like five times as much. They can still sell it but I don’t think it can be called bread, just food. My apologies if this has had been mentioned already.
I tried this recipe and it turn out really good. Thanks ????
I tried out the recipe yesterday and it came out AMAZING. This is definitely going to be made many more times! Also, the smell of the baking bread reminded me of senorita rolls – looked up the dough recipe and it’s almost exactly the same!! You just make a spread of sugary butter to go inside the rolls and make them smaller. We plan to try that using this recipe as well. Thanks for sharing!!
I love milk bread. I love sourdough bread too. And have a lovely quarantine-bread-making routine now. I imagine there is now a world full of bread-makers. It makes the world a better place when we can all come together on a subject, yes?
I come from Belfast and on a Monday you couldn’t buy a ‘plain’ loaf as the bakers didn’t work on a Sunday, you could only get a milk loaf. Thanks for the reminder!
Right when the bread was done, if there were any notes I missed them and couldn’t get the video to show without the timer and blah and blah…
Does it need to sit? Most bread I make needs to sit at least half an hour after cooking before the texture comes together. I either rewarm (rolls) or toast (sandwiches and big loaves) it for eating. This looks like they popped it out of the oven and straight out of the pan into mouth.
Yours also doesn’t look as shiny. Did you leave off the egg wash (I’m generally not a fan)?
If it hasn’t already been suggested, you can proof it in the Instant Pot which keeps a constant temp for dough to rise. I put parchment paper inside liner of IP then the dough so I don’t have to clean it after and use the paper when I roll out on counter to keep cleaning counter to minimum.
Love your books! ????
(I’m fasting and every time I come to the blog to see if IA have posted anything new, the picture of yummy, scrumptious milk bread sends my salivary glands into overdrive!! ????)
Have made that recipe a couple times and its great without any modifications! Especially when I mix the dough in my kitchenaid until it passes the windowpane test.
Love to see you are making milk bread as well! It’s fantastic
I also hate the sugar in them maybe ill try it.
Sarah P says
I tried it, since I love Hawaiian sweet rolls but am trying to cut down on sugar. Mine were more dense than in the video (probably an altitude thing, I’m in CO), but it was absolutely amazing when sliced, toasted, and eaten with butter and jam. Thanks for sharing!
Billie Dee says
That looks delicious. Do you have the recipe?
I’m seeing the comment section of the YouTube video linked here. I wonder if you guys know who Oikawa is.