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Cinnamon Raisin Swirl Bread

Cinnamon Raisin Swirl Bread

The air is cold, the skies are grey. I find myself admitting that fall is here and here to stay. After several rainy days in a row, I want to wrap myself up in a blanket and drink hot tea whenever I catch a glance out of the window. The trees are just barely taking on color, the leaves not yet gathering on the ground. The air is damp with fog and humidity, not with the crispness I love and remember. With a miserable weather forecast for the next few days, including a prediction of snow, I'm happy spending my time indoors.

I wonder if fall will feel the same in this new town, as it did back home.

Cinnamon Raisin Swirl Bread Cinnamon Raisin Swirl Bread

When I finally let my hold on summer pass, the warm scent of vanilla and cinnamon begin to fill my kitchen. Cinnamon is the feeling of autumn for me, the essence of the season all bottled up in a single smell and taste. While pumpkin or caramel or apples may define the season for others, it is this single spice that warms my soul.

Each fall, as soon as the weather grows cold, I like to buy myself a loaf of cinnamon raisin bread. Toasted, with a spread of butter, is my version of autumn happiness. This year, instead of finding my loaf of bread on the shelf, I decided to make it myself.

Cinnamon Raisin Swirl Bread Cinnamon Raisin Swirl Bread

The dough is made with milk to give the bread tenderness and melted butter to add a richness. While I mixed in 3/4 cup raisins, I would recommend a few more if you are a raisin lover and a few less if you are not—it can be tweaked to your personal tastes. The swirl of cinnamon is what makes the bread for me. Though the cinnamon is only rolled throughout the dough, the scent and taste seems to pervade the rest of the loaf, giving a pleasant flavor to each and every bite.

Enjoy when the season beckons and cinnamon is on the menu.

Cinnamon Raisin Swirl Bread

Cinnamon Raisin Swirl Bread evokes feelings and flavors of autumn. Bread dough is scattered with raisins, rolled out, spread with cinnamon and sugar, and rolled together to create a cinnamon swirl. Even though the outside of the loaf may not be beautiful, it really is the inside that counts with this bread. Spread with butter, honey, or peanut butter, this bread is taken to another level and makes a perfect chilly morning breakfast.

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Cinnamon Raisin Swirl Bread

Yields 1 loaf

For dough
2 teaspoons active dry yeast
1 cup (235 ml) warm milk
1/3 cup (80 ml) warm water
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/4 cup (60 grams) melted butter
3/4 cup (120 grams) raisins
3 1/2 cups (445 grams) bread flour

In a large mixing bowl (or bowl of a stand mixer), sprinkle the yeast over the barely warm milk and water and allow to sit about 5-10 minutes until activated (looks frothy). Mix in the sugar, salt, and melted butter. Mix in raisins. Gradually add bread flour, mixing until the dough comes together. If the dough is too dry and will not come together, add small amounts of water until it does. Conversely, if the dough is too sticky, add flour until it becomes workable; however, do not add too much flour or the bread will become dense.

Turn out dough on a lightly floured surface and knead the dough for 7-10 minutes, or until elastic. Alternatively, using the dough hook on a stand mixer, knead the dough for 7-10 minutes, or until elastic. Cover dough with plastic wrap or a kitchen towel and let rise until doubled in a warm place, about 1 1/2 to 2 hours.

For Cinnamon Swirl
1/3 cup (70 grams) granulated sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 large egg, beaten

In a small bowl, stir together the sugar and cinnamon until evenly mixed. Set aside.

Punch down the dough before turning out onto a lightly floured surface. Roll out into a 9 x 15-inch rectangle. Brush the beaten egg over the top. Sprinkle the cinnamon sugar evenly over the egg. Starting with the shortest end, roll up the dough until a log is formed, folding down the ends. Transfer the log, seam side down, into a 9 x 5-inch loaf pan. Press dough down so it reaches the corners evenly. Cover with a kitchen towel and let rise for another 40-60 minutes until doubled.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (180 degrees C).

Bake for 40-50 minutes, or until bread is golden and sounds hollow when tapped. Remove from baking pan and allow to cool slightly before slicing and serving.

Reader Comments (29)

This bread looks fabulous! I'm ready to accept that fall is here too...and I love that quote!!
Your writing simply gets better and better everytime you post! I adore you view on the kitchen shift from summer to fall, yes the food do change and some how we all need to accept we need to say good bye to one season, but embrace another.
fabulous styling!
A gorgeous loaf! Cinnamon is the feeling of autumn for me too, and I absolutely love it :)
Rustic yet elegant all at the same time. This is beautiful.
I love cinnamon raisin bread but sometimes find store bought varieties to be too dense or not cinnamony enough. Perhaps I'll undertake the task of among my own. This looks so good!
10.3.2013 | Unregistered CommenterNatasha
Ahh pinning! Yummy!

xo Jennifer
10.3.2013 | Unregistered CommenterJennifer
This looks wonderful as always! Love your work.
10.3.2013 | Unregistered CommenterSarah
I cannot control myself around cinnamon swirl bread. If I buy it at the store it will last a maximum of two days.

This looks so beautiful and your pictures just scream cozy :) I love them.
This looks beyond wonderful. Thanks so much for posting, this is definitely going on my to-make list.
10.3.2013 | Unregistered CommenterTwo Red Bowls
Looks beautiful! The bread looks so light and fluffy and so comforting.
When you sprinkle the yeast over the warm milk/water do you stir it after? Or do you just let it do its own thing?
10.4.2013 | Unregistered CommenterOllie G
Hi! I immediately made this bread and it tastes amazing, but it doesn't become one slice. The swirl kind of creates "layers", any idea how I can fix that next time? (There will definitely be a next time!) Thanks! xx
10.4.2013 | Unregistered CommenterMartje
I am so not ready for fall and - gasp! - winter, but I am definitely ready for a slice of this bread! Cinnamon raisin is my favorite!
10.5.2013 | Unregistered CommenterLaura Dembowski
This sounds amazing. I'm still somewhat intimidated by bread-making but this might convince me to try it.
10.5.2013 | Unregistered CommenterTammela
Holy cats- I made this yesterday and I'm eating it, toasted with butter, for breakfast this morning. It might be one of the best things I've ever made. Thank you so much.
10.7.2013 | Unregistered CommenterJudi
This bread looks absolutely phenomenal. I love cinnamon swirl bread, and it's such a comforting, relaxing thing to make, it seems almost criminal to buy a loaf at the store.
Gorgeous photos; you captured this bread perfectly.
Pinning this!
10.7.2013 | Unregistered CommenterAbbie
Your bread is so gorgeous! It looks so soft and fluffy, and I love how much cinnamon is in there. What a perfect loaf for a cool fall day.
Cinnamon swirl bread was the first thing I ever tried to bake, back when I was about 16. Surprisingly, it turned out decent, though I bet if I were to make it again 10 years later it'd be ten times more delicious. Thanks for the reminder =).
10.8.2013 | Unregistered CommenterMarygrace Taylor
I have made this bread twice in 5 days. First loaf was gone in 2 days as my family could not stop eating it.....breakfast, snack, dessert....they would have eaten it for dinner if I let them. House smells divine when the bread is in the oven baking.
10.12.2013 | Unregistered CommenterLaura
Looks wonderful! I love everything you do...
10.15.2013 | Unregistered CommenterFeray
Hello, I made the bread yesterday and it came out beautiful and delicious!! Even though where I live there's no Autumn or Spring or Winter, the smell of cinnammon and sugar while it was baking made us dream of being in front of a chimney watching the leaves blow across our windows!! ;) It really is very easy to make...I brushed some of the egg and sprinkled a bit of the sugar-cinnamon mix on top, it looked time, I'll try making it with brown sugar. I have an URGENT question though...we're invited to a brunch on Sunday and I want to bring the bread as a hostess gift, but since it takes more than three hours to make...I was wondering if I can make the dough the previous night, refrigerate it and bring it back to room temperature early Sunday to bake it and have it ready before 11:00am. I'll really appreciate your prompt reply....pleeeaaaseee
10.18.2013 | Unregistered CommenterLia
Lia-- Yes, that works! You can do the bread's second rise in the refrigerator overnight. Then pop it in the over to bake in the morning.
10.18.2013 | Registered CommenterKristin Rosenau
Thank you so much for including metric conversions! The last recipe (also my first) I made of yours (Grapefruit cake) I struggled with the conversions! Can't wait to make this.
10.18.2013 | Unregistered CommenterEleanor
I have a strong love of cinnamon raisin bread. Your loaf looks perfect. I'll be featuring this recipe on my blog on a weekly feature I do called Baking News. It'll be up at the weekend if you'd like to stop by and check it out :) . Have a good day Kristin.
There is something comforting about the entire process of making this bread. It was simple, filled my home with that wonderful cinnamon aroma and absolutely delicious. I honestly think I had a smile on my face the entire time I was making it. The best part is taking that first bite of the warm bread right out of the oven with a smidge of butter. Mmmm so delicious and not to mention beautiful! I will definitely be making this one again. Thank you for sharing.
10.25.2013 | Unregistered CommenterPatty
What a gorgeous looking loaf! When we lived in Chicago, we used to buy cinnamon & raisin bread all the time to toast. Now that we are back in Zurich, I've forgotten about our favourite breakfast treat. Thank you for reminding me! I will have to bookmark this recipe to try very soon.
I only recently found your blog and love your photography. Do you use only natural light? I do a bit myself but I don't get much light where I live and I'm struggling to get good results with studio lighting. Anyway, I'm going to try this recipe soon I hope. Thanks!
11.4.2013 | Unregistered CommenterNeil
Pinning this now. This looks unreal! Can't wait to make this and sit by the fire while eating it :-)
Am living abroad away from home and I found this amazing recipe, the aroma while baking smelled so scrumptious. The texture of the bread was perfect, and with the cream cheese spread, ummmmmmm, perfect for the holiday dinners , delicious with coffee! Very convenient ,because all the ingredients are usually in the kitchen cabinets.
12.11.2013 | Unregistered CommenterLaila

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