Looks yummy, right?
And let me tell you, this cinnamon bread really is yummy! Immensely!
I am actually so impressed by it that I would call it a gift from heaven.
Okay, maybe not exactly from heaven since the original recipe was born in Joy the Baker’s kitchen. But that place actually, when I think about it, is a kind of little heaven… on earth. Many would agree, I’m sure.
Dear friends, please prepare this delicious, finger-licking, soft, yeasty, cinnamony bread over the weekend for your family. Or just for you. It’ll make you happy! So happy!
If you wonder how, I’ll show you…
Here’s the list of ingredients.
1. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together 2 cups (280 grams) flour, sugar, yeast, and salt. Set aside.
2. In a small bowl, whisk together the eggs and set aside.
3. And melt the butter with milk. I did this in the microwave oven (using a heatproof bowl).
You can also melt the butter in milk in a small saucepan over medium-low heat.
4. Add the water and vanilla extract to the milk-butter mixture and stir a little.
5. Now pour the milk mixture into the dry ingredients and mix with a spatula. Add the eggs and stir the mixture until the eggs are incorporated into the batter. Add the remaining 3/4 cup (105 grams) of flour and stir with the spatula for about 2 minutes. Then knead and form a nice ball.
I kneaded the dough by hand for about 10 minutes.
You can, of course, use an electric mixer and have the job done in about half the time.
6. Grease a clean bowl a little and place the dough ball inside. Cover with plastic wrap and place in a warm space and allow to rest until doubled in size, about 1 hour.
O-oh, we have a serious case of yeastafalitis here.
Or, in other words, this is what happened after I let the dough rest for one hour.
7. Deflate the risen dough and knead about 1 tablespoon of flour into the dough.
8. Place the dough onto a lightly floured work surface.
9. Roll it out until it’s about 12 inches tall (30 cm) and about 20 inches (50 cm) wide.
10. Let’s prepare the filling now.
Melt the butter (in the microwave oven or in a saucepan).
11. Mix the sugar with cinnamon.
12. Use a pastry brush to spread melted butter across all of the dough. Sprinkle with all of the sugar and cinnamon mixture.
13. Slice the dough vertically, into six equal-sized strips.
I went horizontally, it’s the rebel in me.
Joy said she drooled at this phase. Well, as the picture indicates, I might have gone a little further. Or maybe it was the Cookie Monster who ate one WHOLE strip of the dough. In fact, I haven’t told you yet, but he sometimes burgles into our place and steals pieces of dough. And EATS THEM RAW!!! Shame on him. Really! Believe me!
14. Stack the strips on top of one another and slice the stack into six equal slices once again. You’ll have six stacks of six squares.
15. Grease and flour a 9x5x3-inch (22x12x8) loaf pan.
The parchment is not necessary. The caramelized sugar would melt and that would tear the paper in the end.
16. Layer the dough squares in the loaf pan like a flip-book. Place a kitchen towel over the loaf pan and allow to rest in a warm place for 30 to 45 minutes.
17. Then bake in the preheated oven at 350 °F (175 °C) for about 30 minutes or until the tops are very golden brown.
The top may be lightly browned, but the center may still be raw. A nice, dark, golden brown will ensure that the center is cooked as well.
Also, if you use a heavy, black loaf pan like I did, reduce the oven temperature slightly. Things seem to bake faster in it.
18. Remove from the oven and and allow to rest for 20 to 30 minutes. Run a butter knife around the edges of the pan to loosen the bread and invert onto a clean board. Place a cake stand or cake plate on top of the upside down loaf, and carefully invert so it’s right side up.
And of course, enjoy dear friends.
Which I am sure you will.
(This recipe was adapted from here.)