I was making soy milk at home and was left with some okara (soy bean pulp) after passing the soy milk through a nut milk bag. I didn’t wanna throw the residual out so I added some to my bread dough. The okara used was about 20% of the total flour weight. Amount more than that, based on my experience, is going to affect the rising of dough in the oven so beware. Actually I’ve used slightly more yeast than usual just to compensate for the loss of the height. And this small amount of yeast is added to the main dough.
Leftover okara may consist of different moisture levels so watch out for the dough consistency and add liquid as you go. If possible, wring out the okara as much as possible before use. Also note that my North American brand loaf pan has the size of 9”x4″x4″, which is slightly bigger in capacity than the Asian brand 450g-toast box. Please multiply my entire recipe by 0.9 in order to adjust to a 450-g toast box.
Okara (Soy Bean Pulp) Bread (Sponge Method)
For 9”x4”x4” Pullman loaf pan
For the Sponge
210 g bread flour
3 g instant yeast (I use SAF gold instant yeast)
130 g unsweetened soy milk
For the Final Dough
30 g bread flour
60 g all purpose or cake flour
0.6 instant yeast
30 to 50 g unsweetened soy milk
60 g soy bean pulp
30 g granulated sugar (I used organic cane sugar)
4.5 g salt
21 g unsalted butter, softened
For the Sponge 中種
Add flour and yeast into the mixing bowl and stir well. Add soy milk and mix with the stand mixer with the dough hook on for about 3 to 4 minutes until a shaggy dough is formed. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and let rise at room temperature for 1 hour then refrigerate for 12 to 18 hours.
***For same-day use, let dough rise at room temperature until tripled in size, around 3 hours.
For the Final Dough 主麵糰
Remove the sponge from the fridge (use it immediately during the summer and let sit for 10 minutes in winter). In the bowl of the stand mixer fitted with the dough hook, combine the sponge and all ingredients of the main dough except the butter. Mix with low speed until the dough comes together. Raise speed to medium-low and beat until the dough is somewhat smooth, not tacky and forms a thick membrane when stretched. If the dough feels dry then add more soy milk a little bit each time.
***In general if the dough suddenly comes off the hook and spins around it while the hook is turning it means that it could hold more liquid. Usually more liquid can be added during winter time. Always reserve some liquid to be gradually added later. If all the liquid is dumped in all at once in the beginning, the flour will be shocked and the dough will be sloppy
Add in softened butter and continue kneading with low speed until all the butter is incorporated. Raise speed to medium-low and beat for 2 minutes. Check the dough consistency and add more soy milk if necessary. Continue kneading and checking every minute until the dough is soft, smooth and forms a thin and translucent membrane when stretched. Raise speed to medium to medium-high and beat for 15 to 20 seconds to strengthen the gluten structure. At this point you should be able to feel that the thin membrane is stronger and less likely to tear than before and that the hole will be very smooth. Remove dough and divide evenly into three pieces. Shape each into a ball. With the seam side down, place shapes on a pastry mat (lightly flour the surface if needed), cover with plastic wrap and let rest at room temperature for 30 minutes.
***Monitor the final dough temperature to below 26℃ for the best result. Dough with warmer temperature tends to be stickier and would cause the dough to rise too soon which affects the final bread texture. Warm room temperature (especially in the summer) and extended mixing time both contribute to the heating up of dough. If at any point the dough is heating up, wrap the mixing bowl with a cold damp towel to lower the temperature and use cool or even cold water in the summer.
***Pay attention to the dough consistency and texture instead of mixing time while adjusting the mixing speed as stand mixers vary in power
***I found it more effective and organized to divide and preshape the dough right after mixing. If done after bench rest, at least 15 minutes of extra bench rest is needed for the gluten to relax again before I can do my final shaping
Flatten a dough and roll it into a long rectangle. With the smooth side facing down, roll up the dough into a log. Repeat with the rest of the dough. With the seam side facing down, cover the dough with plastic wrap and let rest for 15 minutes. Repeat the process one more time while keeping the width of the log slightly less than the width of the bread pan.
Cover the pan with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place like a microwave or an oven with the keep warm function switched on for a minute. Place a cup of hot water inside to add humidity and exchanging when cool, and, with temperature maintained roughly at 86℉/30℃ and a humidity of 70 to 80%, let rise until the dough fills up about 80% of the pan, about 1.5 hours. Preheat oven to 325℉/165℃ about 10 minutes prior to baking.
***pay attention to the dough size instead of time while determining if the bread is ready to bake. This is based on a dough with 1.2% yeast in bakers’ percentage. Bread can be baked sooner if more yeast is used or the oven temperature is set higher.
Remove the plastic wrap. Bake bread for 30 minutes while tenting the pan with aluminum foil as soon as the surface starts to brown (about halfway for my oven) Remove from the oven and tap it on the countertop to release hot air. Wiggle the pan several times to loosen the edges then immediately transfer the bread to a cooling rack to cool completely before slicing.
***Baking time is for reference only. Bread is done when the crust is lightly golden brown with an internal temperature of at least 190 to 195℉ (88 to 90℃) on an instant-read thermometer.
Here’s a loaf made with 30% okara. The dough didn’t rise much in the oven.