Nostalgia struck me the other night and made me think of the cinnamon swirl bread my mom used to make when we were younger and a friend of mine that absolutely loved it. I also came across a very fun blog Fiesta Friday, who encourages a Friday recipe share. Thus, inspired I set out to make this tasty bread, delicious on its own but knowing Friday, a meatless day for us would be arriving just in time for any leftovers to be slightly stale and perfect for French Toast!
First the bread:
Cinnamon Swirl Bread
8 oz warm water
8 oz warm milk
2 tsp yeast
2-3 Tbsp sugar (the recipe works perfectly with 2, 3 makes it a little sweeter)
2 tsp salt.
3 1/2- 4 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
In a large mixing bowl add the warm liquids, sugar, and yeast. Allow the yeast to bloom for about 5 minutes. Add 2 cups of flour and mix at a medium-high speed for about 2 minutes. Reduce speed and gradually add more flour until a soft dough ball forms. On a lightly floured surface, knead dough until it forms a smooth, but soft to slightly sticky ball. Place into a lightly greased bowl, cover and allow to rise 45-60 minutes or until doubled. Prepare two bread pans by buttering liberally.
In the mean time, prepare the filling
1/2 cup brown sugar, loosely packed
2 tsp cinnamon
3 Tbps butter, very soft
Mix together the sugar and cinnamon. Retain butter for spreading.
Divide the risen dough into 2 equal sections. On a well-floured surface, roll the first section out into roughly a 12-inch square, making sure it doesn’t stick to your surface. Spread about half of the butter over the surface of the dough. Sprinkle with half of the cinnamon sugar recipe. Roll the dough, snug but not tight. You should get about 3-4 rolls. tuck in the ends to seal them and place into your prepared bread pan. Repeat with the second section. Brush the top of the loaves with melted butter and allow to rise until doubled again (about an hour). During the last 15 minutes of rising preheat oven to 425’F. Bake bread for about 20 minutes, until golden and hollow sounding. Allow to cool 15-20 minutes before turning out of pans.
Slice and serve!
Should you have leftovers, and I recommend you do, you can make the most wonderful French Toast!
8-12 slices of bread (the number of slices will vary depending on how large, thick and stale the slices are)
3 tablespoons milk (the richer the milk the richer the French Toast, I do not recommend using all cream)
1 rounded tablespoon brown sugar
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
pinch of nutmeg (optional)
2 tsp vanilla extract
Beat together the eggs, milk, sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt and vanilla in a pie plate. Preheat a griddle to 400’F and butter. Dunk each piece of bread into the egg mixture until coated and flip to coat both sides. Place onto the griddle. Repeat until the griddle is full. After a couple minutes check the toast if it comes up easily and is lightly browned flip. The second side will cook slightly faster. Remove from the griddle to a warm plate. Keep warm until serving. Repeat until bread and egg mixture is gone*.
Serve warm with powdered sugar, maple syrup or any topping of your choice!
*Leftover egg mixture? Not to worry! Simply pour them onto your griddle and make sweet scrambled eggs, believe me, your children will adore them!