This past weekend my husband was all over Alberta recruiting for a provincial football game. When he is gone, even if it's for a day or two I miss him and have a tendency to bake things I know he will love when he gets back. One thing he loves is bread that has raisins and cinnamon in it. So I decided to make some so he can inhale it when he got back.
This recipe for the bread is actually my go to for just a basic bread recipe. I can change out the oil and even the flour ratio so it isn't all white flour. You can add more or less sugar to make it sweeter or more for savory recipes. I found this recipe about 4 years ago now from the website La Fuji Mama, she has some great recipes and I find her blog to be bright and fun. Like I said the best part about this recipe I find is that it can be easily changed to cater to what I need.
Simple Bread Recipe
5 1/4 cups of white all purpose flour
2 to 4 tablespoons of sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons of salt
1 1/2 tablespoons of instant yeast
1 1/2 tablespoons of oil (your choice)
2 cups of warm water
In the bowl of your stand mixer with the dough hook attachment, add all your dry ingredients and mix well.
On a low speed add the water and oil slowly. Mix for about 1 minute and check the consistency of the dough, you want it to be tacky or slightly sticky. If it is too sticky and wet add a bit more flour, and if it is too dry and a bit more water.
Set the stand mixer back to a low speed, for my Kitchen Aid it is best to mix at a level 2 so you do not burn out the motor. Mix the dough for 5 minutes. Then for an additional 2 minutes to really knead it.
If just making regular loaves: separate the dough into two balls and shape them into loaves and place into a greased loaf pan. Cover with a tea towel and allow to rise for 30 minutes. Bake at 350F for 25 minutes to 30 minutes, when the outside is a nice golden brown remove the loaves from the oven and turn out onto a cooling rack, spread a bit of melted butter on the top of the loaves and allow to cool. Makes 2 loaves.
For the cinnamon raisin bread:
1/2 cup of softened butter
1 cup of brown sugar
1/4 cup of ground cinnamon
2 cups of raisins
On a generously floured counter top, dump the dough out onto the counter. With a rolling pin roll out the dough to form a very large rectangle.
Take the softened butter and evenly rub and spread it all over the surface of the dough. Spread raisins on top of the butter
In a small bowl mix cinnamon and brown sugar together, then evenly sprinkle it all over the butter and raisin covered dough.
Starting from one end, tightly roll up the dough to the opposite end. Keep repeating the rolling until the entire dough resembles a giant log.
Cut into three equal logs, mine made three loaves but if you only made two that is fine. Take each end and pinch the dough together so the filling doesn't all spill out.
Place the dough into greased and parchment lined loaf pans. Cover with a tea towel and place in a warm spot in the house and allow to rise until doubled in size.
Bake in a preheated 350F oven for 30 minutes. Once golden brown remove from the oven and remove the loaves from the pans, allow to cool completely before eating.
Out of the three loaves this made, two of the loaves are gone, mind you we took a little trip up to Sylvan lake to spend time with my in laws at their vacation condo, so more then just my husband enjoyed the bread. My kids though ate almost an entire one themselves when it was freshly baked!
If you do not have a stand mixer you can do this all by hand, it just takes a bit more elbow grease. I have mentioned in past posts that I have a bit of arthritis in my hands and I have carpel tunnel in my right wrist so I minimize a lot of work with using my Kitchen Aid.
This bread is kind of like a giant cinnamon roll bread, you can definitely toast up the slices and spread them with warm butter. My one loaf didn't turn out as perfect and was more of a droopy gooey loaf, that was the middle one. It still tasted amazing just didn't look as pretty.
See not as perfectly round but man look at it! Still so good!
Happy baking everyone!
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