Take freshly popped popcorn and mix it in with a homemade batch of bread dough… you’ve got popcorn bread. A recipe that has been sent to me a few times to try and here we go! This is quite an eggy texture, slightly sweet and in a way, slightly on the brioche side in some ways – which is no bad thing! The buttery topping is optional and you could add different flavoured popcorns, but you are left with a quirky bread that can work as both sweet or savoury! Play around with this concept and see what you think!
How to make popcorn bread (makes 2 loaves)
First up lets get the yeast working away. Add the hot water, milk and yeast to a bowl and stir for a moment then leave for at least 10 minutes to one side. Hopefully it’ll have some nice bubbles by the time it’s needed to kickstart the dough.
If you haven’t already popped your popcorn, do so now to your preferred method or use package instructions. You can also skip this step and buy ready made popcorn if you like, with flavours too. Either way, once you have the popcorn popped, put it into a food processor and whizz away until fine crumbs are achieved. I did think about the idea of putting the corn kernels straight into the bread, but I’m fairly certain they will not pop!
Take the yeast mixture, add in the popcorn, salt, eggs and butter and stir through until combined with a whisk or wooden spoon. The mixture will be very wet and nothing like dough! Slowly add in your flower whisking as you go, an electric whisk works good here as it does start to stiffen up, keep going until all the flour is added and hopefully you should end up with a nice dough. Knead in a bowl or on a floured surface for 5 minutes adding more flour if necessary. Then place in a clean, lightly oiled bowl, cover with a damp tea towel and leave to double in size for an hour.
Meanwhile, lightly grease the loaf tins and when the dough is ready, knock it back, knead for a moment and divide evenly between the two loaf tins. Again allowing to rise with a damp tea towel over the top, this time for about 30 minutes. Brush the tops of the loaves with the egg yolk using a pastry brush.
Bake in an oven pre-heated to Gas 4/350F/160fan/180c for 40 minutes, if the top of the loaf starts to catch and brown too quickly, cover it with foil and keep baking. Leave to cool in the tin, brushing melted butter on the crust if you wish, transfer to a wire rack to fully cool when safe to do so.