Thank you all for your sweet comments on my Easter post yesterday, I’m glad to hear that everyone had a good one!
Today was that lovely kind of day where you can relax with all the windows open in the house and just enjoy the fresh air…even if you’re a law student whose first exam is tomorrow.
Is it crazy that I’m writing this post right now? Maybe. Should I have been studying the rules of abandoned property and appurtenant easements instead of baking cinnamon raisin bread? Probably. But happiness > stress, and I know at this point that making myself feel crazy will not help me do better on the test. So Cinnamon Raisin Bread it is.
This one is slightly labor intensive, but well worth it because it makes a lot of beautiful bread that will be great for sandwiches and french toast in the days to come! And I will be eating it as toast probably every hour on the hour.
Cinnamon Raisin Swirl Bread (my healthified version of the World’s Best Cinnamon Raisin Bread)
- 3/4 c. 2% milk
- 1 cup water
- 1 package yeast
- 1/4 c. + 1/2 c. demerara sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1/2 t. salt
- 1/4 c. Earth Balance buttery spread, softened (or butter)
- 1/2 c. raisins
- 2 c. unbleached 100% white whole wheat flour
- 3 c. unbleached all-purpose flour
- 2 T. milk
- 1 1/2 T. cinnamon
-In a glass measurer, heat the milk and water in the microwave until it is warm (not hot). Remove from microwave, stir in yeast and 1/4 c. sugar and let sit on the counter until the yeast is fully activated.
-In your food processor/mixer fitted with a dough blade/hook, combine this liquid with the eggs, buttery spread, flours, and salt. Let it knead until smooth and elastic (it will also be very sticky).
-Remove the dough to a heavily floured surface and knead in the raisins by hand. The dough will be very sticky but that’s okay! Sticky dough makes for moist bread!
-Place the dough in a bowl greased with a good tablespoon of canola oil. Roll the dough ball around to make sure it’s coated in oil.
-Let the dough sit in a warm place, covered with a clean dishtowel, until it’s doubled in bulk.
-Once the dough is doubled in bulk, punch it down to release the air and then transfer it to a lightly floured surface. Roll into a large rectangle (you want it to be the length of your loaf pan) that’s about 1/2 inch thick.
-Pour the milk onto the surface of the dough and spread it around with your hands, making sure the whole surface is moistened by the milk.
-In a small bowl, combine the cinnamon and 1/2 c. sugar.
-Sprinkle the cinnamon sugar over the dough, making sure to cover the whole surface.
-Roll the dough up lengthwise (like you would roll up a carpet). Pinch the seam together and tuck both ends of the dough under. Transfer to a well greased loaf pan.
-The recipe makes some extra dough so make cinnamon rolls or mini loaves if you like!
-Let sit, uncovered, in a warm place for about an hour, or until it nearly doubles in bulk again.
-Bake in a 350 degree oven for 40 minutes, covering loosely with foil after the first 20 minutes to make sure it doesn’t get too brown.
Let cool in the pan for 20 minutes.
-Turn the pan on its side and gently pull the loaf from the pan. Let the loaf cool another 15 minutes before slicing. Enjoy! Makes one large loaf and two mini loaves.
This came out so well, I couldn’t be happier!
And my favorite way to enjoy this kind of bread is perfectly toasted with some butter (Earth Balance) on top and a glass of almond milk on the side!
Seriously, it doesn’t get much better than this.
Okay NOW for some reason I’m starting to feel stressed out about that exam tomorrow…I best go get to work.
Thanks for reading!