Simple How-to: Making Cinnamon Raisin Whole Wheat Bread

Some time ago I found myself making far more bread in my kitchenaide stand mixer* than in my bread machine. The reason is simple: I can crank out two loaves at once, which leaves me one to give away or stick in the freezer for later. Or, one to leave plain and one to make extra special. 🙂

My daughters love cinnamon raisin bread and I tried several methods of getting the goodies into the dough: stirring it in from the beginning, adding it to the last part of the mixing, kneading it in by hand…

The very best way I found, though, was to roll it up like a cinnamon roll.

The Recipe

I start soaking 1/2 cup of raisins per loaf in hot water. If I do this well in advance, I go ahead and drain the raisins after they are plump (~1 hour) and use the soaking liquid as part of the water in my recipe. Mmm..

You could just use the “dough cycle” on your bread machine and this recipe. But more often, I make two 2 lb loaves of whole wheat bread in my stand mixer straight from the recipe in my cookbook, as follows:

FIRST, put these in the mixer bowl with the paddle attachment:
1/4 cup honey
3 1/3 cups room temperature water
1 1/2 TBS yeast

after a few minutes, ADD:
4 cups whole wheat flour (spoon and level)
1/4 cup wheat gluten
3/4 tsp dough conditioner
1/4 c. vegetable oil (or, just use applesauce like I usually do and it’ll turn out just the same)

MIX for 2 minutes, cover with a towel and let stand for ~30 minutes

Then switch to dough hook and ADD:
4 cups whole wheat flour (spoon and level)
2 1/2 tsp salt

Mix for 3 minutes and then turn it into a ball and let it rise until doubled (~45 minutes).

Divide into two equal lumps of dough. Now instead of forming loaves, you do the following:

Take one loaf worth of dough and roll it out into a rectangle.

Sprinkle with 1 TBS cinnamon, then the drained raisins. You can also add 1/3 cup chopped walnuts.

Roll it into a log, tuck in the ends and place in pan to rise.

It will take longer to rise but should get nearly as tall as a regular loaf. You can see the regular loaf on the right of this picture getting taller much faster:

But your patience will be rewarded. 🙂

Bake like normal (375 degrees for 25-35 minutes).

Remove it from the pan, cover it with a towel and try to let it cool at least a little while before devouring.

One tip: If you make bread on a regular basis, invest in a dedicated, excellent bread knife. It makes a huge difference! The trouble with a bad knife is that it tends to smoosh your nice, soft, warm loaf of bread. We have a Deglon 8 inch Bread Knife and it beat the pants off the one that came in our knife set.

I still can’t cut a straight slice to save my life, but that’s a personal problem. 😉


About beanland

Scott is a family practice doctor and Anne is a full-time mother and teacher to three beautiful girls and one boy.
This entry was posted in Healthy Eating, Recipes, Whole Wheat Baking. Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Simple How-to: Making Cinnamon Raisin Whole Wheat Bread

  1. Lonica says:

    I can still smell your break baking…. mmmm…. As tempting as this recipe sounds, I’ve given myself permission to buy bread from the store–at least during this stage in my life. :0) Someday, though, I might have to get back on the wagon.


  2. Pingback: Calories: How to Care without Counting | Adventures in Beanland

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