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Cinnamon Raisin Bread: A Strange Experience December 31, 2006

Posted by Sarah in Baking.
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On Wednesday this week, I got the urge to bake bread. Last Christmas, my dad gave me Martha Stewart’s Baking Handbook. When I got it, I wasn’t really that interested in it. However, in the past year I have rediscovered it and finally made my first recipe out of it. The picture of Martha’s Cinnamon Raisin Bread was almost too much to take. I had to make it.

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However, it was one of the weirder bread recipes I have made. Mostly just because of the method of making the dough. Every other recipe I have made has you gradually add the flour in, but this recipe did not. Basically, it had you combine the warm milk and yeast and then put all the other ingredients in the mixer and mix it up. The dough turned out really heavy. It was big, heavy dough. I had a hard time getting it to rise, but eventually it did.

Martha’s finished product had a few air gaps in her cinnamon swirl and so did mine. However, some of the gaps were pretty big. In one loaf, it was cavernous! However, the bread was delicious. The filling caramelized and was gooey. Make sure you actually put the baking sheet under the loaves or you will end up with caramelized filling burning on the bottom of the oven. This recipe makes two soft and tasty loaves.

Cinnamon-Raisin Bread

Adapted from Martha Stewart’s Baking Handbook

Dough Ingredients

1 envelope active dry yeast

2 cups warm milk (110 degrees)

2 lbs. 2 0z. all-purpose flour (about 6 1/2 cups) plus more for dusting

1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, room temperature, cut into pieces.

1/2 cup sugar

2 large eggs, plus 1 large egg, lightly beaten

2 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt

1 1/4 cups golden raisins

1 Tablespoon ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

Filling Ingredients

1 1/2 cups sugar

2 Tablespoons ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg

Directions

In the bowl of an electric mixer, sprinkle the yeast over the warm milk. Whisk to combine. Add the flour, butter, sugar, 2 eggs, and salt. Attach bowl to mixer fitted with dough hook. Mix on low until all ingredients are combined, about 3 minutes. Raise the speed to medium-low, and continue to mix until dough is uniformly smooth and pulls away from the sides of the bowl, about 2 minutes more. Add the raisins, cinnamon and nutmeg. Mix until combined. Place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl, and cover with oiled plastic wrap. Let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 hour.

Return the dough to the floured surface, and pat into a round. Fold the bottom third of the dough up, the top third down and the right and left sides in, tapping the dough after each fold to release excess flour and pressing down to seal. Return the dough to the bowl, seam side down and let rise again until doubled, about 40 minutes. (I am not sure why you are supposed to do all that folding but I did it anyway. If anyone knows why, I’d love to know…)

Grease to 9×5 (I used 8×4 and was okay) loaf pans. Make the filling by combining sugar and cinnamon with 2 tablespoons of water. Return the dough to the floured surface and divide in half. Roll the dough into a 12 by 10 inch rectangle. Brush with beaten egg and sprinkle half the filling on top. Spread the filling evenly.

With the short end of the rectangle facing you, fold in both long sides of the dough about 1 inch. Then, roll the dough toward you, gently pressing as you go to form a tight log. Gently roll the log back and forth (or pinch it) to seal the seam. Place in the prepared pan seam side down. Repeat with the other half of the dough.

Cover the pans loosely with oiled plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place until dough rises just above the rim of the pan, about 30 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 425 degrees.

Brush the tops of the loaves with the beaten egg and put the sheets on a parchment or foil lined rimmed baking sheet. Bake, rotating the pans halfway through, about 45 minutes. (If the tops brown too quickly, cover them with aluminum foil.) Turn the bread onto a wire rack and let cool before slicing. The bread can be kept, wrapped in plastic, at room temperature up to 4 days.

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Comments»

1. brother - December 31, 2006

This bread was unusual. It was kind of like a cinnamon roll in bread form instead of bread with cinnamon in it. I really enjoyed eating it and I’ll look forward to my next encounter with it.

2. Sarah - December 31, 2006

It was pretty good! It was excellent toasted the next day too!

3. chica - December 31, 2006

Found your site at trinigourmet. That bread looks delicious.

4. Sarah - January 2, 2007

Thanks for coming by!


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