Moist and slightly sweet with a subtle hint of coconut, what’s not to like about Pani Popo? You will love these Coconut Bread for breakfast, snack or dessert!
While we Filipinos consume a good amount of rice for meals, I think we are, secondly, bread people. We eat bread for breakfast, merienda (snacks), dip them in coffee, and pair them with everything from ice cream to hotdogs.
I personally love bread so much and I also love discovering new tastes and flavors. Pani Popo is one of my favorite bread from another culture and as you will see, I have good, good reasons.
Coconut Bread or Pani Popo
So let me entice you by explaining why I love them so much. These coconut bread originated from an Island in the Southern part of the Pacific Ocean called Samoa. They are baked in glorious sweetened coconut milk. They come out so moist and soft with a slight teasing of tropical coconut flavor. So, so good!
You have to try it and I know you are gonna love it. So let’s bake, shall we?
Coconut Bread (Pani Popo): The Process
- Make Bread Dough-Proof the yeast by combining it with warm water and a bit of sugar. Once the mixture is foamy, add in the rest of the dough ingredients (except the flour). Stir everything with a wooden spoon. Next, gradually add 3 and 1/2 cups of flour and stir it in until it is incorporated. If the dough is still too wet, add a bit of flour from the reserved amount, and stir just until the dough gathers into a soft, shaggy mass in the center of the bowl.
- Knead the Dough- On a floured board, turn the dough over and knead it for 10-12 minutes. The dough should be smooth and elastic that it can stretch thinly when you do the windowpane test. New to kneading? Check out this guide on how to knead bread dough.
Characteristics of an Adequately Kneaded Dough
- From being shaggy and bumpy, the dough becomes smooth and shiny.
- The dough is no longer sticky, rather it is a bit tacky.
- The dough can stretch thinly. Take a small portion, stretch it using your fingers, as if to form a square. There should be a transparent window at the center.
- Rise, Shape the Coconut Bread and Second Rise– After kneading, shape dough into a ball and place it in a greased bowl. Cover and let rise for an hour or more, until doubled in size. Punch dough down and divide into 12 equal portions. Shape each portion into a ball and arrange it in a lightly greased or parchment-lined 9 x 13 -inch baking pan. Let the rolls rise, covered with a clean kitchen towel or plastic. Wrap for 40 minutes, until doubled in size.
- Make the Coconut Liquid and Bake!- Preheat oven to 350 F. Brush the rolls with coconut milk. Stir in the sugar to the remaining coconut milk and pour this milk into the pan. Finally, bake it for 22-25 minutes or until golden. Serve warm and enjoy.
- Milk Bread
- Japanese Milk Bun
- Soft and Buttery Sugar Buns
- Coconut Buns with Milky Sweet Filling
- Mini Cinnamon Rolls
- Chocolate Walnut Bread
- Chocolate Hazelnut Rolls
- 2 and 1/4 tsp active dry yeast
- 1/4 cup warm water 110-115 F
- 1 cup coconut milk
- 1/4 cup unsalted butter, melted
- 1 large egg
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup whole milk powder
- 1 tsp salt
- 3 and 1/2 cups to 3 and 3/4 cups all purpose flour
For the Coconut Liquid
- 3/4 cup coconut milk
- 1/2 cup powdered sugar
Combine yeast and warm water in a large bowl. Sprinkle about a teaspoon of the sugar. Let this stand for 5 minutes or until mixture is foamy. Add the coconut milk, melted butter, egg, the remaining sugar, milk powder and salt. Stir everything using a wooden spoon.
Gradually add 3 and 1/2 cups of flour and continue mixing until incorporated. Add just enough of the remaining flour until a soft, shaggy dough that gathers in the center is formed.
Turn dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead for 10-12 minutes. The dough should be smooth and elastic. Place it in a bowl, cover and let rise for 1 hour, until the size is doubled.
Punch the dough down. Divide into 12 equal pieces. Shape each piece into a ball and arrange in a 9x 13-inch pan that is lightly greased or lined with parchment paper. Let the rolls rise for 45 minutes, covered with a kitchen towel or plastic wrap.
Preheat oven to 350 F. Brush the tops of the rolls with coconut milk and stir in the powdered sugar to the remaining coconut milk. Pour thesugar-coconut milk mixture to the pan , tilting the pan so that the liquid gets evenly distributed. Bake for 22-25 minutes or until golden. Serve warm.