This recipe is adapted from The Best Recipe, by Cooks Illustrated. It’s not too difficult to change this from a bread to the cinnamon rolls, though the bread is not as sticky.
Cinnamon Swirl Bread — adapted from The Best Recipe
1/2 C milk
4 T (half stick) unsalted butter
2 teaspoons active dry yeast
1/2 C warm (110°F) water
1/3 C sugar
2 C whole wheat flour
2 – 2 1/2 C unbleached flour
1/2 C sugar
1/4 C cinnamon
4 T butter
- Heat milk and butter. I just pop this into the microwave for about a minute. If you’re a true cooking snob, you don’t have a microwave — use a saucepan. Let it cool to 110°F (warm to the touch).
- Dissolve yeast in warm water.
- In a large mixing bowl with a dough hook, mix the yeast mixture, milk mixture, sugar, eggs, whole wheat flour, and 1 C of the unbleached flour. Mix for about 2 minutes at low speed, occasionally scraping the sides with a spatula.
- The dough mixture will be very sticky. Add another cup of flour gradually, until a smooth ball forms. You’ll mix this on medium-low for about 10 minutes total.
- Transfer dough to a large, lightly oiled bowl. Cover the top with plastic wrap and let rise until doubled in size, about 2 1/2 hours at 75°F.
- After the rise, punch down the center of the dough once. If no one’s around, you can optionally let out an expletive.
- Transfer the dough to a large floured surface and let it rest for about 10 minutes.
- Grease the sides of a standard loaf pan (9″ x 5″ x 3″).
- Press the dough into an evenly shaped 6″ x 8″ rectangle. Roll it out to 12″ x 16″.
- Mix the sugar and cinnamon.
- Melt the remaining butter in a separate bowl.
- Brush half the dough with the melted butter. Spread on half of the sugar and cinnamon mixture. Fold the dough so you have a 8″ x 12″ rectangle.
- Cover the dough with the remaining sugar and cinnamon mixture. Start rolling the dough from the short side. Pinch the ends into a seam. Place this in the bread loaf fan, seam side facing down. Pinch the end seams, too.
- Loosely cover the pan with plastic wrap and let rise 1 1/2 hours.
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- Bake until the bread is a golden brown, about 35 minutes. Remove and let cool on a wire rack for about 45 minutes.
- The bread will keep at room temperature for three days, or can be double-wrapped and frozen for three months.