Saturday, October 2, 2010

cinnamon swirl bread

I've talked about my friend Anna before. She's a great baker and often tackles projects I find intimidating, like homemade danish. We love to talk shop, and I know if I get a baking tip from her, it'll be a good one. Anna happened on the Cook's Country recipe for Cinnamon Swirl Bread, which had a very cool hint: if you spray the dough with water, then sprinkle it with cinnamon-sugar, and then spray the filling again with water, before rolling up the dough, you won't get huge air pockets around the filling.  Anna's no stranger to rolling up dough with cinnamon-sugar filling: cinnamon rolls are one of her signature baked goods. But she tried it and reported back, and it totally works!

You can see the roll stays nice and tight, and the only places where there are gaps, I probably didn't spray it thoroughly. (We're not talking about drenching it, just misting lightly and evenly.)

The bread was tasty and had a nice crumb. It made really fragrant, delicious toast, and it's perfect for French toast, especially if you slice it a little thicker. For all the time it takes to make bread, I'd probably prefer a recipe that could also have a savory use, but this is definitely a great bread to make as a sweet treat. It also made a pretty huge (tall) loaf, so I might use a small (even a disposable-size) loaf pan next time and make two loaves.

Cooks’ Country Cinnamon Swirl Bread
Cinnamon Sugar
1/2 cup (3 1/2 ounces) granulated sugar
1/4 cup (1 3/4 ounces) light brown sugar
5 teaspoons ground cinnamon

1 1/2 cups milk , heated to 110 degrees
1/2 stick butter, divided
3 large egg yolks
4 1/4 cups (18 ounces) all-purpose flour, plus more as needed
1 envelope (2 1/4 teaspoons) rapid-rise yeast
1 tablespoon sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons salt

To make the cinnamon-sugar, combine ingredients in small bowl, breaking up clumps. Cover tightly with plastic wrap.

For the bread: Whisk milk, 3T melted butter, and yolks in large liquid measuring cup. (Reserve the egg whites for another use.) 

In bowl of stand mixer fitted with dough hook, mix 1/4 cup cinnamon-sugar, yeast, sugar, flour, and salt. Turn mixer to low and slowly add milk mixture. After dough comes together, increase speed to medium and mix until dough is smooth and comes away from sides of bowl, 5 to 6 minutes. (If dough seems too sticky, add up to 1/4 cup more flour during kneading.) Turn dough out onto unfloured counter and knead to form smooth, round ball. Transfer dough to a greased bowl and turn to coat. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and let rise in warm place until doubled in size, about 1 hour. (Do not place in warm oven or sugar in dough will melt.)

Spray 9 by 5-inch loaf pan with cooking spray. On lightly floured surface, press dough into 20 by 8-inch rectangle, with short side facing you. Using a spray bottle, lightly and evenly spray dough with water. Sprinkle 1/2 cup cinnamon-sugar over dough, leaving 2-inch border along top edge. Lightly spray cinnamon sugar with water until damp but not wet. Starting at edge nearest you, roll up dough, then pinch seam and ends closed. Place loaf seam side down in prepared pan, cover loosely with plastic wrap, and let rise at room temperature until 1 inch above rim of pan, 1 to 1 1/2 hours. Remember, the timing is approximate; it's more important that the dough gets to the right height.

Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 350F. Melt remaining tablespoon butter and brush over top of dough. Sprinkle with remaining cinnamon-sugar and bake until top is deep brown and center of bread registers 185 to 190 degrees on instant-read thermometer, 45 to 60 minutes. Turn bread out onto rack and cool to room temperature, about 2 hours. Slice as desired. (Bread can be kept in airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days.)


Anonymous said...

thats a great tip on misting. i am gonna try that next time ! thanks!

Christy said...

I LOVE cinnamon rolls and breads. I really want to try this. Thanks.