Monday, February 1, 2010

Cinnamon Raisin Swirl Bread

And now, because you have all been waiting for it.

And because it is soooooo good.

Here is how to make the bread. Just remember not to let the yeast intimidate you. Yeast likes to do that and that is why you have to knead the bread. To show the yeast who is boss so to speak. This is a REALLY long post and I apologize. But the bread is worth it.

IMG_4590 These are all the ingredients that you will need.


Anything that has these two ingredients in it has my vote in November


You mix the milk and the water together, you marry them as it were.

Yeast breads are a funny bunch. They love their comfort. Their nice warm place. And so, that means that you need to heat the milk and water up a bit. And it is very helpful, but not absolutely necessary, that you have a thermometer on hand. This is not warm enough. It needs to be 100-115F. So just heat the liquid up to that. And then…..

Then you add the butter. Ummmmm butter. Really you should cut the butter up into chunks because you want it to melt into the milk.

Then you dump the mashed potatoes into the milk/butter mixture. Stir until it is a lovely soupy mess and set it aside to cool to lukewarm. It looks gross but ignore that.

Then you want to mix 3.5 cups of flour with…


Sugar and salt (I forgot to take a picture of the salt)

Do you have one of these? This is a dough hook and it is very handy with this recipe because the dough will be rather stiff when all the flour is incorporated. It is a marvelous invention. I love mine and might marry it….if I didn’t have HHBL around that is. He is better than any dough hook.

You add the flour/yeast/sugar/salt mixture to the bowl and you introduce the milk/water/butter/potato mixture to it and you let the mixer do some work. You sort of send all the ingredients on a quadruple date. But I don’t know who is dating who and it looks more like an orgy so I think I will stop there. After a bit you add all the raisins and they break up the party and make everyone get along. Then you add the last 4 cups of flour, 1/2 cup at a time until a stiff dough forms. Once that happens you do this….


This looks like a shaggy mass but that is what it is supposed to look like. Just dump it out and start to knead

IMG_4640A Work out your aggressions. Show that yeast what you are made of. Tell it whose boss. And do that for about 8 minutes.

IMG_4643Work on it until is is lovely and smooth, like a baby’s bottom. Only this bottom seems to have some growths on it. Hmmmm.

IMG_4646Then you put it in a greased bowl, cover it with a damp towel and put it in a warm and draft free place for the yeast to do it’s magic. I usually put the bowl in the oven with the oven light on. Nice and warm and yeasty in there. Just let it hang in there for about 1.5 hours until it is double in bulk, like I will be after eating more of this bread.

IMG_4653This is my favorite part. Sticking my finger in the dough to see if it is done rising. When you take your finger out, if the hole doesn’t fill in it is double in bulk.

Sorry, right about the time I rolled the dough out the sun came out. How dare it! At any rate, you divide the dough into two pieces and roll them out on the counter and then you sprinkle them with a mix of cinnamon and sugar. Oh my mouth is watering. Then you roll them up starting at the short side. Pinch the edges together and put them in greased loaf pans to rise again. That takes about another hour.

Once these lovelies are risen you then brush the tops with melted butter and pop them into a 375F preheated oven for about 40 minutes until…..

They come out looking like this. And they smell….Divine.

Cinnamon Raisin Swirl Bread
1 1/2 Cups milk 1 1/2 cups raisins
1/2 cup water 1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter 2 teaspoons cinnamon
7 1/2 cups flour – divided
1/4 cup sugar
2 teaspoons salt
2 scant tablespoons instant yeast
1 cup mashed potatoes

Combine the milk and water. Heat to 110-115F. Add butter and stir til melted. Add potatoes and cool til lukewarm.

Combine sugar, salt, yeast and 3.5 cups of flour. Put in the bowl of your mixer with the dough hook attached. Add milk mixture and mix until smooth. This can all be done by hand as well.

Stir in raisins. Gradually add remaining flour until a stiff dough forms. Dump the dough out onto a floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic, about 8-10 minutes. Place dough in a large, greased bowl. Cover with a damp cloth and allow to rise in a warm and draft free place until double in bulk. This takes about 1.5 hours.

Mix 1/2 cup sugar and 2 tsp cinnamon together and set aside. Divide risen dough into two and roll each piece out on the counter into an 8x16 rectangle. Sprinkle dough with the cinnamon/sugar mix. Roll the dough up, jellyroll fashion, starting at the short side. Pinch edges together and place the dough, seam side down, in two greased loaf pans. Allow to rise a second time for about 1 hour.

Preheat oven to 375F. Brush the tops of the risen loaves with melted butter. Bake 40 minutes or until the loaf gives off a hollow sound when the bottom is tapped.

Cool, cut and eat the whole loaf….unless the dog eats it for you.


  1. I might actually try this (in spite of my fear of yeast)! Thanks, Debbie :) Looks scrumptious. -Tammy

  2. I'm totally scared of yeast as well but the results look sooo worth it.

    I think I'll double in bulk as well!

  3. Yum! Thanks for the recipe, and we don't have any pets, just a 15 year old boy who is always hungry so it could end up disappearing all the same.

  4. That looks pretty darn good...wonder if you could make it in a bread machine?

  5. Maybe this is just what I need to regain my sanity. Beat up a lump of dough!

    (Of course, that's assuming I was ever sane in the first place.)

  6. @ Dandy - be not afraid of the yeast!
    @ Barbee Ann - I think you could use a bread machine. Just put the ingredients in in the proper order for the machine.
    @LookLeap - any time you want to come over and pound some bread dough just let me know. You know where I live.


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