Saturday, June 25, 2011

Cinnamon Raisin Oatmeal Bread



Cinnamon Raisin bread has always been one of my favorites, but I have some restrictions. I have been searching for a great raisin bread recipe, but most of the recipes and most of the raisin breads out there I have found inthe past are closer to cake or a cinnamon roll than they are like bread. Sometimes I don't want cake for breakfast and I don't want a cinnamon roll. Sometimes I want a slice of normal, honest wheat bread that just happens to be sweet and have raisins in it.

I found this recipe on a website called The Fresh Loaf that is a great resource for bakers. I scaled it down to two loaves and made a couple additions. For measuring for this bread, I recommend using weight measurements for all dry ingredients as they are more accurate. During the second rise, be gentile when degassing the dough. The last person to punch down their dough was Julia Childs and potentially yo mamma, but it's just not done that way anymore.


I had a little trouble getting the yeast to rise all the way in the pans. Perhaps next time I will change the size of the pans and the amoun

t of degassing I do before the second rise. Even though there were a couple problems, the bread was very moist and had a delightfully light crumb like sandwich bread. It was exactly what I wanted: a great wholesome wheat bread that happened to have raisins.

Cinnamon Raisin Oatmeal Bread

Ingredients

  • 16 oz (3 2/3 cup) all purpose flour
  • 5.3 oz (1 1/4 cup) whole wheat flour
  • .2 oz (2 Tbsp) wheat bran
  • 3.5 oz (1 cup + 2 Tbsp) rolled oats
  • 13.3 oz (1 2/3 cup) water
  • 2.3 oz (1/4 cup) milk
  • 1.6 oz (2 Tbsp) honey
  • 1.6 oz (3 2/3 Tbsp) vegetable oil
  • .5 oz (2 tsp) salt
  • .25 oz (1 packet) active dry yeast
  • .3 oz (1 Tbsp + 1 tsp) cinnamon
  • 7 oz (1 1/3 cup) raisins, soaked (note: weight is the dry weight of raisins before soaking)

Directions
  1. 30 minutes prior to baking bread, soak raisins in warm water. In separate bowl, soak oatmeal in 1 1/3 cup warm water.
  2. 5 minutes before, begin proofing yeast in 1/3cup body temperature water.
  3. Add wheat bran, wheat flour, white flour, milk, honey, oil, salt, cinnamon and yeast to oatmeal. Mix until everything is incorporated.
  4. Let dough rest for 15 minutes. This is called autolypse, and will help relax the dough, making it easier to knead
  5. Knead dough for 5 minutes until the exterior is smooth. Drain raisins and fold them into dough until evenly distributed.
  6. Place dough into bowl and let rise in draft free place for 1 hour
  7. After 1 hour, turn dough out onto floured surface. Fold dough in thirds like a letter. Rotate dough 90 degrees and fold into other direction. Be sure to be gentile when folding and degassing the dough.
  8. Place dough seam side down back in bowl and let rise another hour
  9. After 1 hour, divide dough in half and shape loaves, placing in two greased loaf pans. Mist the tops of the loaves with water and top with oats.
  10. Cover and let rise in bulk again for 90 minutes or until loaves almost crest the tops of the pans
  11. Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
  12. Bake at 450 for 5 minutes and reduce heat to 375. Bake another 15 minutes and rotate loaves. Continue baking for another 15 to 20 minutes until the tops are golden. Knocking on the bottom of the loaf when removed from the pan should sound hollow.
  13. Let loaves cool before slicing. Obviously I'm not very good at that step...

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