PÃO DE SAL (French bread in Brazilian style)

Paozinho de sal, is the most popular bread in Brazil.

You usually buy them from the neighborhood bakery, always fresh made.

This bread is actually the traditional French bread, but Brazilians tweaked the recipe to make it even better. Find below the secrets to bake this must-have breakfast roll.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 4 ½ cups all-purpose flour;
  • 2 envelops FLEISCHMANN’S RapidRise Yeast;
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar;
  • 1 tablespoon margarine;
  • 1 tablespoon salt;
  • 2 cups water.

There are three secrets to make this roll like Brazilians do:

First, the Brazilian rolls uses a bromate mix, but you can get similar results by adding few drops of lime juice or vinegar to the dough.

Second, you have to knead the dough a lot. As longer you knead as better your bread will be. You might consider a heavy-duty mixer to knead the dough for you. Or you can knead the dough by hand, at least 20 minutes. We don’t like bread machines.

Third, is how you get that crust on the top of the bread: the baker’s oven has a controlled level of internal moisture. You can reproduce this condition by placing a small ceramic container with water inside the over before you heat it.

How to prepare:

In a large bowl, mix 1 cup of flour with undissolved yeast, sugar and salt.

Heat water with margarine until very warm (130 °F), add two tablespoons of lime juice to the hot water and pour into dry ingredients and mix well.

Stir in enough remaining flour to make a soft dough. Knead on the lightly floured surface until smooth and elastic (at least 20 minutes, or use a heavy-duty mixer).

Cover and let rest for 2 hours in a warm place.

Take small portions of dough (50 grams / 2 oz).

Flat dough with a pin. Beginning at long end of each, roll up tightly as for jelly roll.

Place rolls with a seam down on a large greased/floured baking sheet, leaving room for the dough to rise.

Let the rolls rest for 1 ½ hour while you heat the oven to 400°F.

With a sharp knife, make couple diagonal slashes (1/4-inch deep) across the top of each roll.
Bake for 25 to 35 minutes or until golden brown.

Just before the rolls are done, open the oven and baste each rolls with cold water quickly. You can use either a brush or a water spray. This will make the flaky crust on the top of each roll.

Paozinho just have the crust on the day they are baked. However, you can store in the freezer for 3 months and re-heat to serve.

Don’t expect the dough made with lime juice to rise as much as the dough with bromates. But never mind, you will be better off eating lime juice than bromates.

Serving size: About 20 rolls.