Bodacious Brioches at Le Pichet

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Eve M. Tai
Le Pichet's generously endowed brioche.
Brioches typically lean more on the dainty side, with flourishes such as scalloped edges and a little bead of dough at the top. But visit Le Pichet, the closer-to-Dieu French cafe in Belltown, and you'll discover a bruiser of a brioche. Some might say it resembles a muffin, others a toadstool, still others a miniature hut.

But I'm with Georgia O'Keefe on this one. Though it's big and brassy, this brioche is still distinctly feminine. And I don't mean girly, I mean womanly in that fantasy-inducing Vargas pin-up kind of way. At the same time, this brioche is giving and lovely, comforting and exciting all at once. (Maybe this entry should be cross-listed under "Sexy Feast.")

Fashioned by pastry cook Yoshiko Rhodes from a recipe developed by Rachael Coyle, a Pichet brioche billows forth soft, pillowy dough inside a golden crust. It's rich with butter and eggs, yes, but a touch of sweetness blooms throughout too.

Le Pichet serves their brioche with petite ramekins of butter and jam, which although make for fine presentation, are really beside the point. These brioches hardly need any glamming up.

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