Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Bread Week! Day 1-Cinnamon Bread

Not sure what made me decide to bake bread this week.  It's like summer in January...not cold at all!  I feel like most bread making gets done when it's cold and rainy out, but oh well!  My goal this week is...Bread making, without the machine, 3 days this week.  Yes, good old-fashioned bread-making without my bread machine.  Now, I have never been super motivated to make bread.  I've probably made a handful of loaves with my bread machine in the past 11 years.  But for some reason, I'm challenging myself to see what I come up with!  The first recipe comes from the book Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day.  I don't have the book, but I think I might actually buy it after I made this bread.  I found the recipe HERE.  You have to make the buttermilk dough first, which makes a lot of dough.  I found out the hard way. I think I was supposed to only use a large chunk of dough to make one loaf, but ended up using all of the dough and had to cut it into two loaves.  So, I didn't double the cinnamon filling...which I should have.  Use this bread for toast or even cut it thick for French Toast...YUM!
I really think anyone could make this bread.  Don't think you have to be an expert, I'm definitely not!

Buttermilk Bread Dough {Adapted from Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day}

  • 2 Cups lukewarm water {between 100 and 110 degrees}
  • 1 cup lukewarm buttermilk {between 100 and 110 degrees, I highly recommend heating on stove}
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp. yeast
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp. salt
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp. sugar
  • 6 1/2 cups unbleached all purpose flour
  Mix the water and buttermilk together, making sure that they are between 100 and 110 degrees {use a candy thermometer if you have one}.  Whisk in the salt and sugar, then sprinkle the yeast on top, letting it develop {get a little foamy} for a few minutes.  Pour the yeast mixture into a large bowl or your stand mixer and mix in all of the flour in one addition.  YOu do not have to knead the bread, but use a wooden spoon {or dough hook if you're using you stand mixer} to make sure the flour is thoroughly incorporated.  Place the container in a warm place with a loose fitting cover and let rise for two hours.  After the dough has risen you are ready to bake, but the authors recommend letting it chill in the fridge first to make the dough easier to work with {I didn't}.

Cinnamon Bread {Adapted from Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day}
**Filling amounts are for ONE loaf of Buttermilk Bread**

  • 1 1/2 pounds of buttermilk bread dough {about the size of a cantaloupe}
  • 1 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 3/4 cup sugar {Next time I will use Brown Sugar!!}
  • 3/4 cup raisins, chopped {kids don't like raisins, so I left them out}
  • 1 egg beaten with 1 Tbsp. water for egg wash
  • Butter for the pan
  Butter a 9" by 4" bread pan, bottom and sides, and set aside.  Roll out the dough to a rectangle approx. 18" long and 9 " wide.  If the dough is not stretching well, let it rest for 10 minutes and continue to roll.  Mix the cinnamon, sugar and raisins together.  Brush the egg wash over the surface of the dough and sprinkle the sugar mixture evenly over the egg wash.  Roll the dough up, using a bit of egg wash to seal up the ends and the seam.  Place the roll in your bread pan and let sit in a warm place for at least an hour.  20 minutes before baking, heat your oven to 375 degrees.  Bake the bread for 35-40 minutes until nice and golden on the outside.  Let cool slightly before serving {I never do}.  Tastes amazing fresh out of the oven with butter!  Enjoy!

NOTE:  If you want to make two loaves, then double the filling mixture, and roll your rectangle out to 18" long and 12" wide.  Once you've rolled up your dough, cut in half and place in two buttered bread pans.  Also, next time I would put a little egg wash on top of the bread before it goes in the oven, and sprinkle with a little extra cinnamon-sugar mixture.  
**If you don't want to make two loaves, then use the extra dough to make rolls for dinner or a loaf of buttermilk bread for sandwiches.

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