Sourdough Milk Bread

Learn how to make this Sourdough Milk Bread recipe with the voice-activated cookbook iPhone app, Myka.

Apple Store
MykaTM new



Cook In:

30 mins

Prep In:

17 hours




Sourdough Milk Bread

By: Sous Chef Myka

Light and pillowy, this Sourdough Milk Bread is unbelievably soft. Originating from bakeries in Asia, this recipe requires standard grocery store ingredients, but gets its buttery flavor and pull-apart texture from some traditional baking steps and secrets.

Jalapeño & Roasted Tomatillo Hot Sauce
  • 40 grams active sourdough starter

  • 190 grams whole milk

  • 370 grams bread flour

  • 30 grams sugar

  • 2 & ¾ tbsp butter

  • 1 large egg

  • 1 large egg yolk

  • 50 grams mascarpone

  • 8 grams kosher salt

Sourdough Milk Bread

Hi Chefs, Myka here 👋

Sourdough Milk Bread isn’t your average loaf of bread. It’s particularly light and fluffy, has a subtle buttery flavor, and it’s made by using a three-step process using mostly standard ingredients. First, you’ll prepare a levain, a type of sourdough starter, before making a tangzhong, a paste made from flour and water. The tangzhong is used traditionally across Asia (including Japan, China, and Taiwan), and results in bread that is notoriously springy. Then, you’ll work with the main dough, giving it plenty of time to rest in between working rounds.

First, you’ll prepare the levain. Mix your active sourdough starter with whole milk, bread flour, and sugar. Cover the bowl, and let it rise in a warm spot for four hours.

Then, you’ll prepare the tangzhong. In a small saucepan, add more bread flour and whole milk, and set on the stove over medium heat. Whisk constantly for about four minutes, until the mixture thickens. Then, transfer the tangzhong to a small bowl and cover with plastic (so it’s touching the surface) and allow it to cool.

Next, cut butter into pats, and let it soften at room temperature. After four hours, grab your stand mixer, and add more bread flour, whole milk, and sugar. Mix with a bread hook, and continue adding a large egg, egg yolk, mascarpone, the levain, and the tangzhong.

Mix on medium speed, and when no dry flour remains, cover and let it autolyse for 30 minutes (this is where you let the dough rest, to help the flour to hydrate, and gluten bonds to develop). Next, add kosher salt and knead the dough for 10 minutes at medium speed, and slowly add the softened butter. Continue kneading at a medium speed for up to 25 minutes, or until the dough passes the “window pane test,” or when dough can be spread thin enough to let light pass through without tearing. 

After that, transfer your dough to a workstation, and divide into 4 equal pieces. Shape them, cover them, and let them rest for 10 minutes. Then, roll each round into an oval, and roll each round up like a crescent roll. Let them rest for an additional 10 minutes. You’ll repeat this process again, before transferring the bread to a greased loaf pan.

Lastly, cover your dough with a tea towel, and let it rise for about 12 hours. When you’re ready to bake, preheat your oven to 350℉, and bake the bread for about 30 minutes, until it’s golden brown. When it’s done, transfer to a wire rack to cool, and brush with melted butter before slicing.

Happy cooking!

Step by Step Instructions

Step 1

To prepare the levain, in a bowl, mix 40 grams of active sourdough starter, 40 grams of whole milk, 40 grams of bread flour and 10 grams of sugar. Cover the bowl and let rise in a warm spot for 4 hours.

Step 2

To prepare the tangzhong, in a small saucepan, add 20 grams of bread flour and 100 grams of whole milk. Set on the stove over medium heat and whisk constantly until the mixture thickens significantly. About 4 minutes.

Step 3

Transfer the tangzhong to a small bowl and cover with plastic wrap so it is touching the surface. Allow to cool.

Step 4

Cut 1 ¾ tablespoons of butter into pats and keep out at room temperature to soften.

Step 5

After 4 hours, in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook, add 310 grams of bread flour, 50 grams of whole milk and 20 grams of sugar.

Step 6

To the stand mixer, continue adding 1 large egg and 1 large egg yolk.

Step 7

To the stand mixer, continue adding 50 grams of mascarpone, all of the levain and all of the tangzhong.

Step 8

Mix on medium speed until the dough just comes together and no dry flour remains. Cover and let the bread autolyse for 30 minutes.

Step 9

After 30 minutes, add 8 grams of kosher salt and knead the dough for 10 minutes at medium speed.

Step 10

Slowly add the softened butter and continue kneading at medium speed for 15-25 minutes or until the dough passes the window pane test.

Step 11

Transfer the dough to your work surface and divide it into 4 equal pieces. Shape each into seamless rounds, then cover and rest for 10 minutes.

Step 12

After 10 minutes, with a rolling pin, roll each round into an oval, approximately 10” long. Starting from the short side, roll it up like a crescent roll. Repeat with the remaining rounds, cover and let rest for an additional 10 minutes.

Step 13

Butter the inside of a 9” loaf pan and set aside.

Step 14

After an additional 10 minutes, use a rolling pin to flatten each dough piece into long ovals again. Repeat the same process and roll up each oval like a crescent roll. Transfer to the greased loaf pan.

Step 15

Cover the dough with a tea towel and let rise for approximately 12 hours.

Step 16

When you’re ready to bake, preheat your oven to 350℉.

Step 17

Bake the bread for approximately 30 minutes, until golden brown. If the bread starts to brown too quickly, cover the pan with aluminum foil.

Step 18

When the bread has finished baking, remove it from the pan and transfer it to a wire rack.

Step 19

Melt 1 tablespoon of butter, then brush onto the surface of the bread. Allow to cool completely before slicing.

 Myka, also known as “My Kitchen Assistant,” is a voice-enabled recipe builder which allows you to effortlessly follow and create recipes. You can read more about Myka’s story by clicking here.