Dutch Crunch Bread
This recipe uses your favorite white bread dough and a rice flour paste to create Dutch Crunch Bread (also known as Tiger Bread or Alligator Bread). This tastes and looks exactly what you get from a bakery.
Prepare your favorite white bread dough, allow it to rise once and form it into a loaf or two. Make any shape of loaf you desire, or you can make a dozen bread rolls.
This makes enough Dutch Crunch topping to coat 2 (1 1/2 lb) loaves or about 1 dozen bread rolls.
You use rice flour to make a paste that coats partially risen bread dough. When the dough finishes rising you bake it. The coating cracks and browns making Dutch Crunch Bread.
You can buy rice flour, but I ground my own rice flour using a Vitamix blender with a regular wet type blade and container. Make sure the blender container is completely dry. It takes about 30 seconds at high speed. Grind until the flour is completely smooth with no lumps. I used 1 cup of uncooked white rice to make the 1 cup of rice flour. Don't use Minute Rice.
Dutch Crunch Bread Topping
Rice flour - 1 cup**
Active Dry, Instant, or Bread Machine Yeast - 3 1/2 Tbsp (mostly for flavor)
White Granulated Sugar - 2 2/3 Tbsp
Table Salt - 1 1/2 tsp
Cooking or Salad Oil - 2 1/2 Tbsp
Water (70°F) - 3/4 cup plus 2 Tbsp (for homemade rice flour, use only about 10 or 12 Tbsp of water.)**
-Combine all of the ingredients in a bowl, and whisk until the mixture is smooth and creamy. It should be the consistency of a real thick gravy, almost like sour cream. It should stick to the partly risen dough and run very little.
-Set mixed Dutch crunch topping aside for 15 to 20 minutes before applying to dough.
-Allow the formed loaf of dough to rise about 30 minutes.
-Spread an even coat of Dutch crunch topping on the shaped dough. For me, a spoon seems to work best for adding and spreading the Dutch crunch toping. It's better to put a real thick coating on the dough than a thin one. A thick coat will form better cracked patterns. Careful not to deflate the dough while adding the topping.
-Allow the dough to rise another 30 minutes.
-Bake in at preheated 375°F oven until the topping is mottled and medium browned color.
** Home ground rice flour requires less water. See above water amounts.