Sunday, September 18, 2011

Kicking off Food Week: Cinnamon Swirl Bread

The Discovery channel has Shark Week and here at A Paper Buffet, we’re having Food Week!

There is a crispness in the air that can only mean fall.  Which means: I don’t feel like salad for dinner anymore.  Summer meals are light, and fresh; fall foods are warm, spicy, comforting.   I love to cook, and enjoy trying new recipes.  I also love the old standards that I grew up with.  Taking a peek in my freezer, I realized I was running out of chicken and would need to stock up again.

Enter: Operation Fall Freezer Fill-up.

I also realized, I was getting tired of cooking chicken  the same way.  Typically I buy chicken in bulk, portion it and freeze it.  Then I’m stuck trying to figure out what to do with it!  So this week will have a heavy focus on chicken, but some other good eats.

I’m starting off with Cinnamon bread.  I recently found the wonderful food blog Baked Bree and then I found her recipe for Cinnamon Swirl Bread.  I love anything cinnamon, and I love bread, so naturally cinnamon bread is a winner.  I, however, do not like raisins.  Supermarkets continue to torture me and I can only find cinnamon-raisin bread. So this recipe was made for me…no raisins!

You’ll need:

  • 1 tbsp quick rise yeast
  • 3 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 tbsp honey
  • 2 tbsp canola oil (or vegetable oil)
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1 1/4 cup warm water
  • Filling:
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 tbsp cinnamon
  • 2 tbs butter

I hauled out my hand-me-down Kitchen-Aid mix stand mixer,  (thanks Mom!) complete with electrical tape, and got to work.  The dough comes together so easily, with just a few simple ingredients.  Combine the flour and the yeast, then add the water, honey, canola oil and salt; let the mixer knead the dough for about 10 minutes. Turn the dough a few times by hand, and place in a lightly oiled bowl.  Cover with plastic wrap and let double (about an hour).  Knead the dough, roll out and cover with melted butter and cinnamon sugar.  Roll up and place into baking pad, cover with towel and let rise for 30 minutes. {You should go see Bree’s post for pictures because it was dark at my place by this time}.

The whole process of making bread fascinates me.  Watching the dough rise gets me every time.  Remember those grow-toys we had as kids? You put them in warm water and they grow to the size of the container? I had an alligator that grew to the size of a giant fish-tank. I digress.

This bread smells incredible while it’s baking.  It’s agony waiting for the 25 minutes (at a 350F oven) to be up.  You know the bread is going to be good when even the cinnamon sugar can’t contain itself!

Oh. My. Goodness.  I nearly burned my hands trying to get at this bread right away.  It turned out a perfect; golden brown on the top and cinnamon goodness bubbling out.

See the cinnamon waterfall? that means it’s going to be good!!

This bread is ooey-gooey deliciousness. See those cinnamon trenches?- heaven. 

A cup of tea or coffee, this is the perfect breakfast, mid-morning, mid-afternoon, after-dinner snack.

It is sweet though.  When I make this again, I will cut down the sugar.  The recipe calls for 1 cup sugar, and I only used 3/4 of a cup and I found it to be a bit too much.  Next time I’ll only use 1/2 a cup and I don’t think it will make a big difference.

Bree suggests this would be amazing as french toast…and I’m considering her other suggestion and make bread pudding, but I can’t guarantee it will last long enough to make anything else. I doubt this will make it to the freezer.

Happy Sunday friends and get ready for Food Week!


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