I’ve been on a breakfast kick lately, so be prepared for an onslaught of fantastic breakfast treats!
People tend to be a little wary when it comes to homemade bread, fearing that they’ll somehow screw it up and kill the yeast. But bread really isn’t all that hard to make! Yeast is actually pretty forgiving–give it a lukewarm environment with some sugar and it’ll bloom.
Maybe I’m so confident in my bread-making abilities because I have an ever supportive, always smiling believer in all of my baking endeavors in the form of my wonderful dog, Junior.
Or maybe I’m just confident because I’ve made bread a zillion times and it’s always risen perfectly. Sure, yeast is alive, but anything that can stay dormant living in your fridge for ages until you need it must be pretty resilient.
Moral of the story: bread is nothing to be afraid of! And homemade bread is a cheap, easy, delicious alternative to store-bought. Plus, it’s a blank canvas that can be turned sweet or savory, depending on your mood!
As for me, I’m always in the mood for something sweet. Like cinnamon toast! Or cinnamon raisin bread, for that matter.
I borrowed/adapted this recipe from the Pioneer Woman as that woman makes fantastic food. Her recipes have never failed me!
So go grab your yeast and make some delicious bread! And try not to feel bad for your pup staring at you with his longing pooch eyes, clearly wanting some. Take him for an exciting adventure instead!
Then go enjoy your cinnamon bread!
Cinnamon Raisin Bread
makes one loaf
1 cup milk (I used whole)
6 tablespoon (3/4 stick) unsalted butter
2 1/2 teaspoons dry yeast
1/3 cup sugar
3 3/4 cups flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup sugar
2 tablespoons cinnamon
about 3 tablespoons softened butter
1/2 – 3/4 cup raisins (depending on how much you like raisins)
Egg wash (an egg whisked up with a teaspoon or so of milk)
In a small saucepan over low heat, melt together the butter and milk. Heat until the butter is completely melted and warm, but don’t let it boil. Remove from heat and let cool until warm, but not hot. Gently stir in the yeast and let the mixture sit for about 10 minutes. In a medium bowl, stir together the flour and salt and set aside.
Warm the bowl of an electric mixer by running hot water over the outside. Add the sugar and eggs and beat with the paddle attachment until combined and frothy. Pour in the yeast mixture and stir to combine. Add the flour/salt mixture in 3 installments, beating to combine after each addition. Switch to the dough hook attachment and beat the dough on medium speed for about 10 minutes. The dough should be a little sticky, but if it seems overly sticky, add another 1/4 cup flour and beat for an additional 4-5 minutes.
Warm up a medium metal or glass bowl by running hot water over the outside. Drizzle about a tablespoon of canola oil in the bowl and add the dough, tossing briefly to coat in oil. Cover the bowl in plastic wrap and a tea towel and set aside in a warm place for 2 hours.
After 2 hours, turn out the dough onto a work surface and roll into a neat rectangle. It should be as wide as your loaf pan and around 1/2 inch thick. Mix together the sugar and cinnamon. Smear the surface of the dough with 2 tablespoons of softened butter and sprinkle evenly over the butter. Sprinkle the raisins on top of sugar. Starting at the far end, keeping it tight, roll the dough toward you. Smear the loaf pan with the remaining tablespoon of softened butter and place the roll, seam down, in the pan. Cover the loaf with plastic wrap and set aside to rise for another 2 hours.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and brush the top of the dough with egg wash. Bake for 30-40 minutes, until the top is golden brown and firm to the touch (mine baked for 34 minutes). Remove the bread from the pan and cool completely before slicing.