Asian Water Roux White Bread

Asian Water Roux White Bread

Myfrost 1

"Secret to homemade bread that will stay soft for days! if you enjoy the silky, cotton-soft but expensive loaves from Chinese bakeries, then you will love these! My kids can't rave enough about them. It might be more work than the usual white bread, but trust me, this is so worth it! Water roux works best refrigerated overnight; however, if you don't want to wait, make sure it's room temperature when you add it to the dough! The dough is quite moist to work with. It is easier to do the kneading in a mixer."

Ingredients 10 h 50 m {{adjustedServings}} servings 139 cals

Serving size has been adjusted!

Original recipe yields 20 servings



Amount per serving ({{servings}} total)

  • Calories:
  • 139 kcal
  • 7%
  • Fat:
  • 3.2 g
  • 5%
  • Carbs:
  • 23.8g
  • 8%
  • Protein:
  • 3.5 g
  • 7%
  • Cholesterol:
  • 18 mg
  • 6%
  • Sodium:
  • 146 mg
  • 6%

Based on a 2,000 calorie diet

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  • Prep

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  1. To make the water roux, bring 1/2 cup of water to a boil in a small saucepan, and stir in 1 tablespoon of sugar and the butter, mixing to dissolve the sugar. Place 1 cup of flour in a heatproof bowl, pour the boiling liquid over the flour, and whisk it well to remove lumps and transform the flour into smooth paste. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap, and refrigerate overnight.
  2. The next day, bring the water roux to room temperature. In the work bowl of an electric stand mixer, stir the yeast with 3/4 cup of warm water, and let it stand until a creamy layer of foam forms on the surface, 5 to 10 minutes. Add 3 cups of flour, 1/3 cup of sugar, dry milk powder, salt, and egg. Scoop all the water roux by spoonfuls into the mixing bowl, and let the machine knead the dough on low speed to thoroughly combine the ingredients, about 2 minutes. Increase the mixer speed to medium and knead until the dough is soft and smooth, about 8 more minutes.
  3. Turn the dough out into a greased bowl, cover lightly with a cloth, and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 hour. Punch down the dough.
  4. Grease 2 8x4 inch loaf pans.
  5. Working on a floured surface, cut the dough in half, and form each half into a loaf shape. Place the dough in the prepared loaf pans, cover lightly with a cloth, and let rise until doubled, about 1 more hour.
  6. Preheat an oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Bake the loaves in the preheated oven until the tops are lightly golden brown, 30 to 40 minutes. Remove the bread from the pans, and brush loaves with melted butter while still warm.
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Reviews 12

  1. 12 Ratings


I was so excited to try this recipe, because I've always struggled with the texture of my yeast breads. I've never tried Chinese bakery bread, but the description sounded excellent to me. It is easy to make, but I found the texture to be very similar to a regular good homemade yeast bread. It also took longer than an hour to rise...possibly because my house is rather chilly :) The finished bread did not rise up real high...I think the pan size is a bit large. Even though I don't think the texture lived up to the description, my family devoured the loaves. I will be experimenting with this recipe, using different flours/yeasts, and will report here with the results! Thanks again for a yummy recipe! Update: I've tested the recipe twice, using bread flour and a smaller loaf pan both times. The first loaf, I used the fresh, warm roux, no refrigerating overnight. The second loaf, I chilled the roux overnight, and then heated it in the microwave until it was warm. Both times, the loaves were super soft, tender, fluffy, cottony, silky, mouth-watering good! I actually think, though, that the fresh roux bread rose a little higher. I am not going to bother with the overnight refrigeration next time. So,to get the ultimate soft bread, just make this recipe with bread flour instead of all-purpose, use a smaller loaf pan than called for, use fresh, warm roux, and your family will thank you! 5 stars for this delicious bread!!!!!


Jan 28, 10. I tried a new way. Substituted 1.5 cups Whole wheat flour for 1.5 cups of the white flour. Used 1/4 cup dark molasses plus 1/6 cup white sugar for the sugar. Followed remainder of recipe.. Wonderful!. Absolutely Wonderful! I make it twice a week. Soft, moist, wonderful flavor. Crust is soft. Please note that the recipe calls for "Active Dry Yeast" This yeast is the one which requires 2 rise. Rapid Dry yeast is a different item. Be sure the yeast is fresh. Use Gold Medal or Pillsbury flour for best flavor. This is such an easy recipe to make. I do knead it with the mixer and dough hook for the 8 minutes. ( Dough is moist.) I don't bother putting the dough on a floured surface prior to placing in bowl to rise; I just dump it in the greased bowl, let it rise. Punch down and place it in the greased pan or pans. I find it makes one 5x8 loaf or two smaller loaves. Either way - - very good. The roux can also be held for even a week in the frig and is good. If one needs to bake fresh the next day the second rise can be placed in the refrig over night. It is called "slow rise." Take out of refrig - set on counter while oven preheats. Wonderful. Cooking time ranges from 25 minutes to 30 minutes. If kitchen temperature is below 70°, time for dough to rise will be longer. I also put more humidity in the air by simmering a pan of water on the stove. I do use a digital thermometer. Temp cook to 190° works well. I am so thankful for this recipe.


I couldn't see how only 1/2 cup of water was called for to make the roux? It resulted in a really stiff dough and was not enough liquid to incorporate 1 cup of flour. I ended up having to boil and add another 1/4 to 1/3 extra water. I used just one packet of rapid rise yeast which is equivalent to 2 1/4 tsp. and it doubled in size within 1 hr. to 1 hr. and 15 minutes. Though it has doubled in bulk this dough is really soft and doing the indentation test to check that the dough has risen enough is impossible. That is the stage I am at now and am getting ready to punch it down and form my loaf for (1) 9"x5" pan. Will update with my results. Results: Per comments, I opted to do just one 9"x5" loaf but I think I easily could have made 2 of the 8"x4" loaves (edit: was perfect for 2-5'x9's) though as this in one BIG loaf of bread!! (I used less yeast at 2 1/4 tsp, but since I used rapid rise that may account for the large "top". Only other change I made was to add the extra boiling water to the roux and I used it fresh. Other than that this was an easy and wonderful bread to make!! The first thing tomorrow morning I will be making more! Thanks! *edit* I googled for information regarding the "water roux" for bread making and from what I could find the flour should be 1 part to 5 parts water! I thought this roux was awfully thick! I had only uped my water from 1/2 c to just shy of 1 full cup, but it still came out good. Will try the suggestion of 1:5.