Brioche Crumble: The Yummy French Bread

Written by Luisa Davis on . Posted in food

Not every bread gets to be described with the word yummy, only very few breads like the brioche get the tag, especially when it is used to make toast – the delicious french toast brioche. French toast brioche is a yummy bread toast that can be eaten and enjoyed with no toppings or side dish. 

That’s not to say that there aren’t excellent topping ideas like the crumble that you can try. A brioche crumble is basically a topping that has the main ingredient crumbled like the cornflakes crumble.

What Makes it Different from Most Breads?

A brioche is a viennoiserie, that is baked from a yeast-leavened dough pretty much the same way a standard bread loaf is made, yet it has the qualities of a pastry. Its pastry qualities are as a result of the extra ingredients that is used in its making.

Ingredients such as egg and butter gives the bread a richer, buttery and sweeter taste with a softer texture. So a brioche isn’t exactly a bread neither is it a pastry, it is a viennoiserie and of course, you wouldn’t be wrong to call it a bread or a pastry.

Brioche is considered as the crème de la créme of bread by many and yes, they are definitely not wrong for holding that opinion. The bread is widely preferred in making an old fashioned french toast that employs walnut crumble as its topping.

The pastry-like bread can be eaten for breakfast, brunch or for dessert (it’s sweet enough) and is a nice yummy way to treat your guests or family. French toast with brioche bread is a highly nutritious meal that’s very filling and since getting the bread might not be so easy, you would have to bake the brioche yourself and it’s really not so difficult. It can take on different shapes, it can be rolled into a roll, a bun, a ball with a braided top or as a loaf. It could even take the shape of a cupcake – use that right pan.

First Things First: Brioche Bread Recipe

There’s no brioche crumble without the bread. If you’re interested in using any other type of bread, then it’s no longer a brioche crumble. Making this bread is not so difficult but it’s advisable you make it on a day when you can fully take on the mixing, shaping, chilling, proofing, kneading and of course, the baking.

To make the work a lot easier, use the stand mixer programmed for dough or a bread machine for the kneading. Shaping is however not really a big deal here since we’re making a rectangular loaf – a rectangular pan will do the job.


  • Four and a half cup of all-purpose flour. A little extra will be needed for dusting.
  • 1 sachet of dry yeast or 1 tablespoon (15 ml) of active yeast. You could also use instant yeast.
  • Two-third of a cup of nonfat milk.
  • 3/4 cup of granulated sugar – you could reduce the quantity of sugar.
  • 1 teaspoon of salt.
  • 4 eggs (beaten).
  • Three-quarter of a cup of softened butter.
  • Grated lemon zest (optional ingredient)
  • 150 g of mixed dried fruits, this should be soaked in brandy (optional ingredient).

For your egg wash: 1 beaten egg with a tablespoon of cream is enough. Your egg wash is a glaze for the bread, it gives a shining touch to your brioche’s golden brown color. You can also use milk as a substitute for cream.


  1. In a large bowl, mix the flour, sugar, yeast and salt together.
  2. Mix the eggs and milk together in another bowl.
  3. Make a well in your flour mixture and pour in your egg and milk mixture. Beat it into a dough.
  4. Flour a carving board and flatten out the dough on the board. Knead the dough and crush the butter on it.
  5. With the heel of your palm, press the butter against the dough, do this until the dough is formed.

For ease, use a stand mixer to mix the ingredients together excluding the optional ingredients. Allow the mixer work for 10 minutes on low speed or for as long as takes to get a smooth and elastic dough.

  1. Proof the dough, how? Place the dough as a ball into a large greased bowl and coat the dough with oil before covering the bowl with a plastic wrap. Leave it for about 1 hour in a warm place and allow it rise.
  2. Deflate the dough by punching holes into the risen dough, add the mixed dried fruits and grated lemon zest.
  3. Chill the dough by covering with a plastic wrap and allow to refrigerate overnight or for 8 hours, this will make the dough more workable.
  4. Preheat the oven to 400F, that is 200 degree Celsius and grease your brioche pan.
  5. Place the dough in the greased pan and cover with a greased plastic wrap. Allow the dough to rise until it’s double its original size, this should take about 60 minutes or more.
  6. Brush the dough lightly with your egg wash and allow to bake for about 40 minutes till it turn golden brown. Check if your brioche is ready by inserting a skewer.

Covering with foil would prevent your brioche from getting burnt, specially if it isn’t ready. Allow to cool in the pan for 10 minutes before transferring it to a wire rack.

If fully cool, slice it into 1 to 2 inch thick slices and get ready to make walnut French toast.

Brioche Crumble Recipe

The journey gets really easier from here and in about 40 minutes, your meal will be ready.

Ingredients for the french toast:

  • 6 slices of your yummy homemade french bread
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • Few drops of vanilla extract
  • A pinch of salt
  • 1 tablespoon of granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon of cinnamon
  • 5 eggs
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • Topping – walnut crumble topping for a delicious old fashioned french toast.
  • Maple syrup (optional)


  1. Mix the 5 eggs in a wide bowl. The bowl should be wide enough to hold two bread slices and not too deep.
  2. Mix in the granulated sugar, heavy cream, vanilla extract, cinnamon, and salt. Whisk to get a fine mixture.
  3. Dip two slices of bread into the egg mixture, allow the slices to soak up the egg for about 3 minutes before turning the slice over. Do the same thing for the other side. And repeat this step for the remaining slices.
  4. Heat the butter over a medium-high heat and cook the bread in a skillet until both sides of each slice are golden brown.
  5. Bring out your baked walnut crumble topping. This can easily be made by baking a mixture of brown sugar, chopped walnuts, old fashioned oats, cinnamon, chilled unsalted butter for 10 minutes or so at 350 F. If you just made your topping, allow the lightly golden brown crumble to cool before sprinkling over your brioche french toast.
  6. Pour a little maple syrup over it too and serve!

Finally! Your delicious walnut french toast is ready. This dish is really enjoyable and don’t be shocked if you find yourself making another batch all over. Spicing things up with this bread is quite easy and frankly, enjoyable. Agreed, walnut french toast is super delicious but that doesn’t mean it has to be walnut crumble all the time. Try out other crumbles.

Also, you could spice up the brioche itself. How?

Throw in some blueberries into the dough, when fully baked and sliced, the bread will look awesome with the little blue spots. You can also spice it up with a little pumpkin filling.

The brioche crumble recipe also works well with apple crumble and cornflakes crumble. You should definitely try those too, but after, only after you’ve made one with walnut crumble topping.

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Luisa Davis

Luisa Davis

Luisa Davis is a frelance writer and foodie based in Portland, California. Though raised on her mother's homestyle Italian cooking, she has spent most of the last five years traveling and immersing herself in other countries' cuisines. Her work have been published in various publications, both online and offline.

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