Cinnamon Swirl Bread is one of my favorites, and now you can make it at home.
I don’t know what it’s like at your grocery store, but at mine, there’s always a BOGO deal for Cinnamon Swirl Bread, and my BOGO loving heart can never resist it. Rather than continue to be a sucker at the store, I made it at home under the guidance of the all-knowing bread master, Peter Reinhart.
Breakfast toast will never be the same.
When I first introduced my bread baking extravaganza of 2017, I told you that not every recipe is going to be perfect. Well, I’m about to cash in on that statement. I’m a bit of a perfectionist when I’m baking. Okay, lies. I’m a capital “P” perfectionist when I’m baking.
This Cinnamon Swirl Bread was by all means delicious and loved by everyone who came into contact with it, but I think it could have been even better than it already was. I rushed the final proof time and the loaves weren’t as tall or soft as I expected them to be. I just earned the capital “P,” didn’t I?
Learn from my mistakes. You have to play by the bread’s schedule rather than the recipe’s.
The recipe may say let the loaves proof for an hour or until they’ve risen above the lip of the loaf pan. If it’s been an hour and they’ve yet to crest the lip of the pan (like mine), then you’ve got some more proofing to do.
In bread baking, go off appearance rather than time.
As much as I try to show that baking and pastry aren’t as scary and intimidating as you might think, mistakes (large and small) are bound to be made. I think one of the reasons I enjoy baking so much is that you’re always learning something new. Even on the recipes you’ve done a million times.
For anyone who’s counting, in Reinhart’s book, this recipe is listed as Cinnamon Raisin Walnut Bread. I changed it a bit to fit my taste and added the swirl, which was one of Reinhart’s suggested alterations.
Two down. Many, many more to go.
- 3 ½ cups bread flour
- 4 tsp granulated sugar
- 1 ¼ tsp salt
- 2 tsp instant yeast
- 1 ¼ tsp ground cinnamon
- 1 large egg, lightly beaten
- 2 Tbs butter, melted
- ½ cup whole milk, at room temp
- ¾ cup water, at room temp
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- 2 Tbs ground cinnamon
- In the bowl of a stand mixer with a paddle attachment, stir together flour, sugar, salt and instant yeast. Add the egg, butter, milk and water and mix on low until it forms a ball. If needed, adjust with flour or water in case it’s too wet or too dry.
- Switch to a dough hook attachment and mix on medium for 6-8 minutes. It’s ready once it passes the gluten windowpane test.
- Lightly oil a large bowl with nonstick spray and transfer dough to the bowl. Lightly spray with nonstick and cover with plastic wrap. Allow to proof for 2 hours or until the dough doubles in size.
- Combine the second amount of sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl and set aside.
- Divide the dough in half. For both halves, flatten dough with your fingertips to a 5x8 inch rectangle. Sprinkle with sugar cinnamon mix. Start from the short end and roll up dough little by little, pinching the dough together at the seam as you go along. The dough will spread out to about 8 inches long. Pinch the loaf closed with the back of your hand or thumbs.
- Lightly coat two loaf pans with nonstick and transfer dough to pans seam-side down. Lightly spray loaves with nonstick and cover with plastic wrap. Allow to proof for 60-90 minutes or until the dough starts to rise above the lip of the pan and has nearly doubled in size.
- Preheat the oven to 350F with the rack in the center. Place the loaves on a sheet pan, making sure they’re not touching each other.
- Bake for 20 minutes. Rotate pan and bake for 20 to 30 more minutes. The finished loaves with be golden brown on top.
- Immediately remove the loaves out of the pans and onto a cooling rack. If desired, brush with melted butter and sprinkle with additional sugar and cinnamon. Allow to cool completely (about two hours) before slicing.