Conchas are better known as pan dulce or Mexican sweet bread. I scanned the Internet for the best conchas recipe and couldn’t find one. So I took it upon myself to take pieces of 3 different recipes and put them together, with a couple alterations of course! Many recipes you see all have butter in the dough, but this recipe is traditional and uses lard. It will leave you with light pillows of sweetness that you will dream about while you sleep.
Dissolve yeast in water in a large bowl. Stir in 2 cups flour, sugar, evaporated milk, lard, egg, cinnamon, and salt. Beat until smooth. Stir in enough of the remaining flour to make dough easy to handle.
Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Knead until smooth and elastic, about 5 minutes. Place in a large greased bowl, then turn so greased side faces up. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 1/2 hours.
Meanwhile, make topping dough. Beat sugar and butter together until light and fluffy. Stir in flour until mixture is the consistency of coarse crumbs. Divide into 2 equal parts. Stir cocoa powder into 1 part and vanilla extract into the other.
Divide chocolate topping into 4 small balls; roll each piece into a flat circle. Repeat for the vanilla topping.
Punch down concha dough and divide into 8 equal pieces. Shape each piece into a ball; placed on a greased baking sheet. Place a vanilla or chocolate circle on each ball of dough, smoothing it over the top. Make 5 or 6 shallow cuts across the circle to form a shell pattern. Cover and let rise until doubled, about 45 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C).
Bake conchas until lightly browned around the edges, 15 to 20 minutes.
Per Serving: 639 calories; protein 10.8g; carbohydrates 98g; fat 22.8g; cholesterol 66.4mg; sodium 400.8mg.
The best flavour of the flour could make a real difference to your bread. Different makers do vary. Extra-strong or Canadian flours, which are naturally higher in gluten, may give you a best rise than standard dough flours – especially if you’re making wholemeal bread , which not always getting bigger as well as white bread.
To made this in a breadmaker , add all the ingredients to your breadmaker and follow the manufacturer’s instructions.
A bread first rising can be done in the fridge overnight . This slows down the time it takes to rise to double its size, giving it a deeper flavour. It’s also a great limit , as you can work it yesterday , then clear it off the next day.