As a little girl, I grew up running around my parents’ paletería (popsicle shop) in Guanajuato constantly surrounded by the smells of freshly made bread, fruits, and other sweet treats.
Sadly, when I moved to Ocean City, Maryland, I couldn’t find any Mexican conchas in our new town. I missed the traditional Mexican sweet bread so much, that I decided to develop my own recipe for our family café.
I’ll never forget the very first time I baked conchas from scratch. I tested out many recipes using different types of butter, milk, and even sugar.
When I took my first bite, I felt like I was reliving my childhood and poured myself a glass of milk ready for a full-on dunking session.
Today, I am proud to say that I finally developed a concha recipe that makes many of my customers experience that same nostalgic rush when they take their first bite. Some of their stories have even brought tears to my eyes.
This matcha concha is a fun and unique twist, but it’s just as yummy as the original flavors and I hope you enjoy it!
Prep Time: 5 hours
Baking Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 5 hours and 20 minutes
Yields: 13 conchas
4 cups or 500 grams sifted bread flour
1 1/3 tablespoons or 11 grams SAF Red Instant Yeast (Note: If using SAF yeast it is not necessary to have eggs room temp/ or milk warmed)
2/3 cups or 140 grams granulated sugar
10 tablespoons or 120 grams unsalted butter (European style and room temperature)
1 1/4 teaspoons or 3 grams kosher salt
4 large eggs (room temperature)
1/2 cup or 142 milliliters evaporated milk (carnation)/or whole milk
1 teaspoon or 5 milliliters vanilla extract
3 tablespoons vegetable shortening for coating
shop food & snacks
Concha Topping Ingredients
1 1/4 cups or 160 grams confectioners sugar
1 1/2 cups or 185 grams AP/Pastry Flour (golden shield)
1/2 cups + 2 teaspoons or 40 grams matcha powder
1 1/3 cups + 1 tablespoon or 175 grams vegetable shortening
1/2 cup all-purpose flour for stamping
Preparing the concha toppings
- Using your hands, mix matcha powder with sugar and shortening until mixture can clump together.
- Mix in flour until it is fully incorporated.
- Set aside for use later on.
Preparing the conchas
In a mixing bowl, first add sifted flour, then yeast, then salt, sugar, eggs, and milk. (Notes: Make sure salt and yeast are poured separately and that they are added to opposite sides of the bowl. Yeast and salt should not have direct contact or the salt will kill the yeast and the dough will not rise. Eggs at room temperature is helpful for faster dough.)
Using the dough hook attachment, mix everything until the dough forms, making sure to leave no excess flour at the bottom of mixer.
Add butter (cut into cubes). Mix until creating a smooth-elastic texture (approximately 50 minutes)(Note: Do not over mix the dough or the butter will start to melt and cause issues throughout the rising process. Also, kneading by hand is not necessary.)
Grease a glass bowl with 1 tablespoon of shortening.
Prepping the dough. Pull the dough out and create a ball with your hands by tucking the dough into itself.
Place the smooth surface of the dough side up into the glass bowl and cover the bowl with plastic wrap. (Note: Make sure the plastic wrap is sealing the bowl to avoid drying out the surface of the dough.)
1st proof––Place the bowl in a warm, draft free space for 90 minutes or until the dough has doubled in size.
Once the dough has doubled in size, pour it on to a lightly floured work surface.
Press the air out of the dough by folding the dough into itself and pressing down.
Once flattened, cut the dough into 13 pieces. Shape the pieces into balls quickly.
Place the balls on two separate baking sheets (lined or greased).
Completely coat the surfaces of the concha balls with vegetable shortening while flattening them down.
2nd proof––Once the concha balls are completely coated, cover them with a kitchen towel or plastic wrap and set them in a warm, draft-free space for 90 minutes or until they have doubled in size.
During the 2nd proof, you can make the concha shell topping and set it aside.
Pre-heat the oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit.
Once the conchas are doubled in size, you can apply the shell toppings.
On a floured surface, roll out the matcha shell topping to a thin layer.
18. Stamp shells and place them individually by softly pressing them on to each concha. (Note: Use flour and a scraper between each stamp to prevent sticking. If you don't have a scraper, you can use a knife to cut out 13 circles with 4-5 curved lines in them on the rolled out matcha topping.)
19. Put baking sheets in the oven and reduce the temperature to 315 degrees Fahrenheit.
20. Bake conchas for 25 minutes.
21. Once you pull conchas out of the oven, allow them to cool for 10 minutes.
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