Tarte au Sucre

Sugar Yeast Cake

Source:  Anne Willan

This yeast cake with a sugar topping is popular in the North, which is sugar beet country. you can double the quantitiy of dough and use half for 'pain brioche', a rich bread that the French like to toast for breakfast.

4 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup light or dark brown sugar


1/3 cup of milk
1 tablespoon sugar
2 teaspoons yeast
1-1/2 cups flour (more as needed)
2 eggs
3/4 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons butter
Note:  For a sourdough version I double the recipe and add a sourdough biga or  a levain to the mix.

Make the yeast dough. Put the lukewarm milk in a small bowl, add the
sugar and add the yeast.   Leave to proof.  Sift the flour on a marble
slab or board and make a well in the center.  Add the eggs, salt and
dissolved yeast mixture.  Briefly mix the central ingredients then draw
in the flour with both hands, pulling the dough into large crumbs with
the fingertips.  Knead the dough for 5 to 10 minutes or until very
smooth and elastic, adding more flour if necessary so that the dough is
not too sticky.  pound the butter to soften it thoroughly, then work in
into the dough, slapping the dough on the work surface, just until the
butter is thoroughly incorporated.  Transfer the dough to a light oiled
bowl, cover with a damp cloth and let rise until almost doubled in
bulk.  Thoroughly butter the pie pan.

Transfer the risen dough to a floured work surface and fold it in
thirds, patting it to knock out the air.  flour your hands and flatten
the dough into the base, not the sides of the pan.  Let rise for 15
minutes and then spread with soft butter and sprinkle with the brown
sugar.  Let rise for 15 minutes and then bake for 15 or 20 minutes in a
400°F oven.  Serve at room temperature.

Pain Brioche

After folding the risen dough in thirds on the floured work surface,
shape into a rectangle and set in a buttered 20 x 10 x 6 cm. loaf pan
and leave to rise for about 30 minutes.  Brush with an egg glaze and
bake in 400°F oven for about 30 minutes or until golden brown.

 Note:  Options.
Chocolate Babka
 I processed the chocolate just a little to break it up, added some
butter and some powdered sugar and spread it over the dough. Then I
rolled it up and then twisted it before putting it in the buttered loaf
pan. Sprinkled the top with a little Streusel topping. Mixed a little
butter, flour and sugar together for the Streusel. I didn't measure
anything thing.

Cream Cheese Filling
2 packages 8 oz. cream cheese
3/4 c sugar
1 egg beaten
1 t. vanilla extract
1/8 t. salt
Filling: To make filling beat together cream cheese with sugar, add egg and
vanilla extract and salt