This sourdough cinnamon raisin bread is pretty phenomenal. It's loaded, I mean really loaded, with with plump raisins. I love the contrast between the sweet raisins and the mild sourdough. It makes the absolute best toast for breakfast (with butter of course).
The dough is fairly high in hydration, so it's a little sticky. When working with it, lightly flour your work surface and your hands, and be sure to have both a dough scraper and bench knife to work with the dough. Keep dipping your hands in flour. It's messy, but it's worth it.
You can control the amount of cinnamon sugar you add and cut back on the raisins if you like. I chose to go really light on the cinnamon sugar swirl but go full on with the raisins. When I am running late in the morning, two slices of this toast makes a quick and totally filling breakfast.
This bread takes about five hours to make (most of this time is inactive), but don't let that intimidate you. It is actually really easy. Just be sure to use freshly fed and bubbly sourdough starter.
The original recipe for this bread calls for a biga, which is a mix of flour, water, and a little bit of yeast that is allowed to ferment in the refrigerator overnight. I adjusted the flour and water for my 100% hydration sourdough starter. The recipe has been adapted from Amy's Bread, Revised and Updated: Artisan-style breads, sandwiches, pizzas, and more from New York City's favorite bakery.
Sourdough Cinnamon Raisin Bread
Makes 2 loaves
2 ounces warm water (105 to 115 degrees F)
1 1/4 tsp active dry yeast
397 g ripe sourdough starter
13 ounces room temperature water
600 g unbleached all purpose flour
12 g Kosher salt
425 g dark raisins
1/4 C plus one T sugar mixed with 1 T cinnamon (I used only about a tablespoon of this mixture and reserved the rest for cinnamon toast)
Extra flour and water to make adjustments to the dough
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the warm water and yeast and let stand for about 3 minutes.
- Add the starter and room temperature water and stir until everything is dissolved.
- Add the flour and salt and continue to stir with a dough whisk or wooden spoon until you have a shaggy ball of dough.
- Knead with the dough hook for about four minutes. Cover with plastic wrap and let the dough rest for for 20 minutes.
- Knead with the dough hook for about 5 minutes, adding flour or water by the tablespoon until the dough is tacky and elastic. The dough should be fairly sticky but just clear the sides of the bowl.
- Place the dough into an oiled dough rising bucket or bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Let it rise for 60 minute.
- At the 60 minute mark, reach into the bowl and gently push down on the dough. Pull the dough up from all four "sides" and stretch it and fold it over itself. Flip the dough over and place it seam side down. Re-cover the dough and allow it to rise for another 45 minutes, until doubled (mine was tripled).
- While the dough is rising, place the raisins in a bowl and add just enough warm water to reach just below the level of the raisins.
- Oil or butter two 9 inch by 5 inch bread pans and preheat the oven to 450 degrees F and drain the raisins.
- Lightly flour a work surface and turn the dough out onto it. Lightly flour your hands and press the dough into a 14 by 12 inch rectangle. With a bench scraper, cut the dough into two pieces.
- Sprinkle the pieces with the cinnamon sugar and then press the raisins into the dough. There are a lot of raisins. Just go with it.
- Roll up the dough pieces into logs and place them into the two bread pans, seam side down. Cover with plastic wrap and allow to rise for 60 to 90 minutes, until doubled.
- Bake the loaves for 15 minutes, and then reduce the heat to 375 degrees F.
- Bake for another 20 to 25 minutes, until the internal temperature of the bread reaches about 190 degrees F. If the loaves are getting too dark, tent with foil.
- Cool the loaves in the pans for 5 minutes, and then remove them from the pans and cool completely on cooling racks.