Until recently, I had forgotten that the instruction manual for my KitchenAid mixer also contained recipes. I tried out their basic white bread recipe when my mixer was new to me and I was learning the difference between making breads by hand versus the stand mixer. I remembered the bread was pretty standard, but it’s key point was that it made two loaves. Excellent if you’re feeding lots of people or wish to have bread for multiple purposes.
When I used the recipe a few weeks ago, I noticed the cinnamon bread variation and
was pretty keen to try it. I already have an amazing cinnamon roll recipe but cinnamon swirl bread is a slightly different baked good. The recipe instructions expect that you are going to make both loaves the same, but I decided to make one standard loaf and one cinnamon.
Let’s talk about the original recipe instructions for a moment. It was like a Choose Your Own Adventure book. For the cinnamon bread, the recipe states, “roll out each half into a rectangle, as directed for Basic White Bread on page 63.” Okay… I’ve never rolled it out into a rectangle for basic white bread, but I flip to that page. That recipe says, “shape each half into a loaf, as directed on page 66.” I was kind of expecting page 66 to direct me elsewhere or, at least, proffer a choice between taking a jungle path or a ride in a hot air balloon. What I actually found is that, apparently, I’ve never shaped this bread according to the recipe directions! So I had a nice laugh at myself and who doesn’t like giggling while they bake?
As per usual, I used a blend of flours (½ cup spelt, 2 cups whole wheat pastry flour, and 2½ cups all-purpose). I ended up only needing five cups of flour, but have used all six in the past. I sprinkled sesame seeds in the pan and on top of the standard white loaf. I added dates and almond butter which is why they are listed as optional in the recipe. Raisins would be lovely in the cinnamon one as well. If I were making both loaves cinnamon, I’d like to try it with some dates kneaded into the dough itself to spread the flavor all throughout the bread. Oh! Or some nuts like chopped pecans in the dough. That’d be good too. This bread is barely out of the oven and I’m already mentally baking more!
We tried the cinnamon bread while it was still a little warm which was an excellent idea. The bread is reminiscent of those Little Debbie pecan spinwheels and I loved those when I was a child. I enjoyed every bite! I will definitely keep experimenting with different versions of this cinnamon bread.
Basic White Bread + Cinnamon Bread
- ½ cup unsweetened almond milk
- 3 tablespoons sugar
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 3 tablespoons coconut oil
- 1 tablespoon + 2 teaspoons active dry yeast
- 1 ½ cups warm water
- 5 to 6 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
- ¼ cup sugar
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 tablespoon coconut oil
- 2 teaspoons maple almond butter (optional)
- 1/3 cup chopped dates, about 5 dates (optional)
In a small saucepan, heat almond milk, sugar, salt, and coconut butter over low heat until sugar is dissolved and oil melted. Remove from heat and allow to cool until lukewarm.
In the bowl of your stand mixer, dissolve yeast in warm water. Add lukewarm almond milk mixture and 4½ cups of flour. If you are using a blend of flours, be sure to include the flours that you will be using smaller amounts of (the spelt & whole wheat pastry flour in my case) in that 4½ cups to be sure they are included.
Using the dough hook, mix at speed 2 for about a minute.
Add the remaining flour ½ cup at a time, mixing at speed 2 after each addition (the original recipe says to add the flour while mixing at speed 2, but that resulted in my mixer throwing flour everywhere). Mix dough until it clings to hook and cleans the side of the mixing bowl, about 2 minutes.
Knead on speed 2 about 2 minutes longer, until dough is smooth and elastic. Dough will be slightly sticky.
Place dough into a greased bowl, turning once to oil the top. Cover and let rise in a draft free area for about an hour, or doubled in bulk.
While the dough is on the first rise, go ahead and mix up the cinnamon filling. In small bowl, mix the sugar and cinnamon. If you’re using almond butter, in a separate bowl, blend almond butter and coconut oil together until smooth.
Punch down dough and divide in half. Shape one half into a loaf and place into a greased 8½ x 4½ inch loaf pan. Cover and place in a draft free area.
Using a rolling pin, roll the other dough half into about a 9 x 14 inch rectangle. Spread almond butter/coconut oil on the rectangle. Sprinkle cinnamon-sugar mixture evenly around and top with dates.
Starting with the short end, roll dough, and pinch to seal the seam. Pinch ends and turn them under (I did not do this). Carefully place dough roll seam-side down (I also neglected to do this) in greased loaf pan. Cover and place in warm, draft free area.
Let both loaves rise for about an hour or until doubled in bulk. Towards the end of the rising time, preheat oven to 375°F. Bake for 40 to 45 minutes; check at 30 minutes and tent with aluminum foil if browning too quickly. My loaves baked for 40 minutes with no cover and turned out beautifully.
Remove from pans immediately and cool on wire racks.
**If you plan to make to 2 of the same loaves: Basic White Bread recipe bakes at 400°F for 30 minutes and the cinnamon version bakes at 375°F for 40 to 45 minutes. The plain white bread baked fine at the cinnamon version temperature and time.
Yield: 2 loaves