Pains au Lait are soft and fluffy French milk buns, which are a popular afternoon tea treat for children in France. Make these delicious buns at home with this step-by-step recipe.
For the Pains au Lait
For the Egg Wash
To Make the Dough
First Proofing Period
To Portion the Dough
To Shape the Dough
Second Proofing Period
To Bake the Pains au Lait
DIFFERENT TYPES OF FLOUR
* This recipe works well with plain flour (all-purpose flour) or strong white bread flour.
* For Swiss readers: I use Zopfmehl (or farine pour tresse) when making bread and enriched dough.
DIFFERENT TYPES OF YEAST
* Please note that there is a difference between instant yeast (also called instant dried yeast or fast-action dried yeast) and dried yeast (also called active dry yeast). If you are not sure what type of yeast you have, please check the packaging for instructions on how to use the yeast.
* With instant yeast, you can add it directly to the flour mixture without having to activate it first.
* With dried yeast, you will need to activate it first (usually in some warm liquid).
* If you are using fresh yeast, you will need about one block (40 g fresh yeast = 14 g instant dried yeast). Crumble the fresh yeast into the warm milk, and stir to dissolve the yeast.
PROOFING THE DOUGH
Dough needs a warm environment for the yeast to activate and cause the dough to rise. If you don’t have a warm place in your home, try one of the following ideas:
* In the oven with the oven light switched on (works only for some ovens).
* In the oven with a tray of boiling water on the bottom shelf.
* In the oven or a steamer oven at a low temperature of about 25-40°C (77-104°F).
OVEN & STOVE TEMPERATURES
All recipes on this website have been tested on an induction stove and/or with a conventional oven (i.e. an oven without fan). All recipes on this website use temperatures for a conventional oven, unless otherwise mentioned. Convection ovens (i.e. fan-forced ovens) are typically 20°C/70°F hotter than conventional ovens, but please check your manufacturer’s handbook.
To convert from cups to grams, and vice-versa, please see this handy Conversion Chart for Basic Ingredients.