Monday, January 10, 2011
Cinnamon Raisin Swirl Bread with Streusel Topping
From the kitchen of One Perfect Bite...I usually keep a loaf or two of this bread in the freezer. While it's a wonderful addition to a leisurely weekend breakfast, I actually keep it on hand to serve at meetings or morning coffees when I have no time to bake. The bread has much to commend it. It's delicious, easy to prepare and cheap. If you do a lot of volunteer work, and are responsible for the "and" part of morning coffee, cost can be important. This bread can be made for about $3 a loaf and it freezes well. It's the type of bread that old-times called a "race track" because of the tracks and spiral that form when the dough is rolled and shaped. I've kept the fillings here to an absolute minimum. Feel free to improvise and add or subtract ingredients to suit your own taste. Because they go on rather than in the bread dough, precise quantities are not as important as they might otherwise be. I hydrate and drain my raisins before sprinkling them on the dough. I usually soak them in orange or apple juice but I've been known to use dark rum. It adds flavor and helps to keep the bread moist. I also use mace in this bread. Mace is a spice made from the waxy red covering which covers nutmeg seeds. The flavor is similar to that of nutmeg. Used in small quantities it adds subtle flavor to baked goods. Mace can be found in the spice aisle of most large grocery chains and it is available online from spice purveyors such as Penzy's. If you are unable to find it , use nutmeg or replace it with additional cinnamon. I think the bread looks exceptionally good and while there are four steps to its construction, each step is very easy to do. If you plan to freeze the loaf, hold the glaze and apply it just before you serve the bread. The bread tends to stale quickly, so eat or freeze it the day it's made. I know that those of you who try this loaf will love it. Here's the recipe.
Cinnamon Raisin Swirl Bread with Streusel Topping...from the kitchen of One Perfect Bite
2-1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast
1/4 cup + 1-1/4 cups lukewarm milk, divided use
1/4 cup + 1 teaspoon sugar, divided use
3-3/4 to 4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons salt
3 tablespoons softened unsalted butter + butter to grease bowl and baking pan
additional softened butter for greasing bowl and pan
1 tablespoon melted butter
1/2 cup raisins, soaked, drained and patted dry
1-3/4 teaspoons cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon mace
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup flour
1 1/2 tablespoons butter
1/3 cup confectioners' sugar
2 teaspoons milk
1/8 teaspoon vanilla extract
1) Stir yeast and 1 teaspoon of sugar into 1/4 cup of warm milk. Let sit until mixture begins to foam.
2) Combine reserved 1/4 cup sugar with 3-3/4 cups flour, salt and 3 tablespoons butter in a mixing bowl. Stir in yeast mixture and reserved 1-1/4 cup warm milk with a wooden spoon or your hands. Continue to stir until dough forms a ball.
3) Transfer dough to a lightly floured surface to rest a few minutes. If kneading dough with a dough hook, wash and dry mixing bowl before placing dough back in the bowl. Knead dough by hand or on lowest setting of mixer until it takes on a silky quality, about 4 minutes. If dough is too sticky, add additional flour. Dough is sufficiently kneaded when indentation made by pressing 2 fingers into dough springs back. Allow to rest for several minutes.
4) Butter inside of a clean, dry bowl. Place dough in bowl, and turn to coat all sides with butter. Cover bowl with plastic wrap. Let rise in a warm place until doubled in size, about 1 to 2 hours.
5) Punch dough down and transfer to a floured surface. Knead for 2 or 3 minutes, adding additional flour only as needed. Roll dough out into a rectangle about 8 by 16 inches. Brush dough with melted butter (saving excess for application of streusel). Sprinkle with cinnamon, mace, sugar and raisins. Starting at a short end, roll dough up tightly and tuck ends under. Place in a butter 9 x 5 x 3-inch pan, seam side down. Covered with plastic wrap and let rise until dough rises above edge of pan, about 40 to 60 minutes.
6) Meanwhile, preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Combine flour and brown sugar in a bowl. Using a pastry blender, cut the butter till mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
7) Brush risen loaf with melted butter and slash down the middle. Sprinkle with crumb mixture, pressing in if necessary. Bake for 45 minutes, or until loaf makes a hollow sound when tapped.
8) Remove from pan and let cook on a wire rack for at least 2 hours before cutting.
9) Whisk together confectioners' sugar, milk and vanilla extract in a bowl. Drizzle over top of finished cakes and let set before serving. Yield: 1 loaf.
You might also enjoy these recipes:
Cinnamon Swirl Bread - Cookie Madness
Pumpkin Yeast Bread - The Galley Gourmet
Coconut Bubble Bread - One Perfect Bite
Pumpkin Cinnamon Bun Cake - Baking Bites
Monkey Bread - Brown Eyed Baker
Cinnamon Raisin Walnut Bread - Playing House
Hot Cross Buns - Buttercream Barbie
Brioche Muffins - Andrea Meyers
This post is being linked to:
Smiling Sally - Blue Monday
Wild Yeast - Yeast Spotting