As I am soon going over to Canada to visit my sister’s family I thought I would test out my recipe for a cinnamon swirl loaf. I would usually want to add raisins as well but I am aware that my great-nieces don’t like raisins in their bread so I made mine without. For the recipe I will include the optional raisins but I have to say this bread is lovely just as it is, toasted and with lashings of butter.
It does take a while to make but is well worth the effort. It is also ideal for slicing and freezing in little packages to be used whenever you want some variety to your morning toast.
I am pleased with how well mine turned out, the swirls being well defined and the taste of the bread is just fantastic. It can be eaten without toasting but I find that toasting is better, as he brings out the aroma of the cinnamon as well.
For the dough:
- 100ml water at 43c/110F
- 160ml milk, scalded and cooled to 48C/120F
- 7g active dried yeast
- 1 large egg(XL in USA)
- 50g caster sugar
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 50g unsalted butter, softened
- 500g strong white bread flour(plain flour would be ok too)
- 50g raisins (if desired)
For the filling:
- 90g caster sugar
- 15g ground cinnamon
- 1 medium egg, beaten
- 10g butter
- In the warm water place the yeast and a little of the sugar, stir and set aside to activate for 10 minutes, until the yeast has started to foam up.
- In a bowl whisk the yeast, sugar, egg and butter together.
- Add the milk and whisk until all is mixed well.
- Place that mixture into the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook.
- Add the flour and mix on low speed to get the flour combined.
- Increase the speed to medium and continue mixing for a few minutes, until the dough is coming away, cleanly, from the side of the bowl. The dough should be smooth and slightly tacky to the touch.
- Remove the dough from the bowl and form into a ball.
- Place the dough in a large bowl that has been lightly greased.
- Turn the dough to ensure it is coated with the oil and then cover the bowl and allow to rest in a warm, draught-free place until it has doubled in size(mine took a couple of hours as it was quite cool, 1.5 is usually enough).
- Grease the insides of a 2lb/900g loaf tin with butter.
- Take the dough from the bowl and place on a lightly floured work surface and knock the dough back to release the gases.
- Flatten the dough, or roll it out, into a rectangle, with the short side being slightly narrower than the length of the loaf tin.
- Brush egg over the surface of the dough.
- Mix the ground cinnamon and 90g sugar together and sprinkle all over the top surface of the dough.
- At this stage if you want to use raisins too you can sprinkle about 50g of them over the dough.
- Roll the dough, from the short side tightly.
- As you roll brush the exposed dough with egg
- When the dough has been rolled up pinch the seam all the way long to seal it and tuck the ends to seal them.
- Place the rolled dough into the loaf tin and press it down to cover the surface of the base.
- Cover the loaf tin with a clean, damp, tea towel(or loosely with plastic wrap) and leave to rest until the dough has doubled in size again, probably about an hour.
- As the dough rises heat your oven to 180C/160C Fan/350 F.
- Place the tin in the oven and bake for 45 minutes.
- If the top starts to brown too quickly you can cover it with some aluminium foil for the last 10 or so minutes.
- Remove the loaf from the oven and tip out onto a wire rack to cool, rubbing a little butter over the top if you wish(as soon as it is out of the oven).
- When the bread has cooled completely it is ready to slice and enjoy.