Chocolate BRIOCHE TWIST BUNS
Time: 30 minutes active time; plus resting, cooling and chilling
3 ½ cups (437g) bread flour
¼ cup (21g) unsweetened cocoa powder
1 ½ teaspoon instant or rapid-rise yeast
1 teaspoon table salt
⅔ cup (158ml) water, room temperature
1 large egg, plus 2 large yolks (set aside whites for filling)
⅓ cup (66g) granulated sugar
8 tAblespoons butter, softened, cut into 8 pieces
6 ounces (170g) dark chocolate, chopped
6 tablespoons (85g) butter
¼ cup (28g) confectioners' sugar
2 large egg whites
1 large egg, lightly beaten with 1 tablespoon water
¼ cup (59ml) water and ¼ cup (50g) sugar simmered together until sugar is dissolved
FOR THE DOUGH: Whisk flour, yeast, cocoa powder and salt together in bowl of stand mixer. Whisk water, egg and yolks, and sugar together in a medium bowl. Using dough hook on low speed, slowly add water mixture to flour mixture and mix until cohesive dough starts to form and no dry flour remains, about 2 minutes, scraping down bowl as needed.
Increase speed to medium-low; add butter, 1 piece at a time; and knead until butter is fully incorporated, about 4 minutes. Continue to knead until dough is smooth and elastic and clears sides of bowl, 11 to 13 minutes.
Transfer dough to lightly floured counter and knead by hand to form smooth, round ball, about 30 seconds. Place dough ball seam side down in lightly greased large bowl. Cover bowl tightly with plastic wrap and let rise at room temperature until increased in size by half, 45 minutes to 1 hour.
FOR THE FILLING: Microwave chocolate and butter in bowl at 50 percent power, stirring occasionally, until melted and smooth. Stir in sugar until combined and let cool completely, about 30 minutes. Whisk in egg whites until fully combined and mixture turns glossy.
Line tray with parchment paper and lightly flour. Transfer dough to tray and press into 8 by 16-inch rectangle. Spread filling over one half of dough, leaving ¼-inch border around edges. Fold dough in half over top of filling, forming an 8-inch square, and press gently to adhere. Cover loosely with greased plastic and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. Transfer chilled dough square to lightly floured counter. Press and roll dough into 12 by 12-inch square and cut dough into twelve 1-inch strips. Working with 1 dough strip at a time, twist ends of strip in opposite directions and form into a knot. Arrange buns on prepared sheets, six per sheet, spaced about 2½ inches apart. Cover loosely with greased plastic and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or up to 24 hours.
One hour before baking, remove buns from refrigerator and let sit at room temperature. Heat oven to 350F. Gently brush buns with egg mixture and bake until golden brown and internal temperature reaches 190F, 18 to 22 minutes. Immediately brush buns with simple syrup (there will be extra syrup) and remove to wire rack to cool.