Cinnamon Babka

This is a rich buttery yeast bread (almost cake or dessert), full of cinnamon flavor. It’s not hard to make, just takes a little time, and so worth the wait!

Cinnamon Babka

Babka Dough
1/2 cup whole milk (heat to 110°)
1½ tsp yeast
1/4 cup sugar
2 egg yolks (reserve egg whites, 1 for filling & 1 for top of loaf)
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla
2 cups flour
1/2 tsp salt
4 Tbl butter, softened

Cinnamon Filling
1 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup flour
2 Tbl butter, melted and cooled
1 egg white
2 tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp salt

In bowl of mixer with dough hook, pour heated milk. Sprinkle yeast over milk, sprinkle sugar over yeast, and let sit until yeast is activated and bubbly. Add egg yolks, egg, and vanilla; mix. Add flour and salt; mix about 3 minutes. Increase mixer speed to medium and softened butter in pieces, one piece at a time. Mix until butter is incorporated and dough smooth, about 5 minutes. Turn dough out into a greased bowl, cover, and let rise until at least doubled (probably about 2 hours).

Mix cinnamon filling ingredients and set aside. Turn risen dough out onto well floured surface. Using enough flour so dough doesn’t stick, roll out into a 12″x16″ rectangle. Gently spread cinnamon filling evenly over surface of dough. Roll up starting from short side and pinch seam. Using a sharp knife, carefully cut all the way down the center of your dough cylinder (use flour on knife to help keep from sticking). Turn both halves of dough so filling is facing up. Twist one half over the other starting in the middle to the end (keeping cut edges facing up) and twist other end from center to the end. Tuck ends under and loaf together to length of loaf pan. Liberally grease loaf pan and carefully lift loaf into pan. Cover and let rise about 1½ hours.

Preheat oven to 350°. Lightly beat the one reserved egg white until frothy. Gently brush over risen loaf and sprinkle with cinnamon sugar if desired. Bake about 45 minutes. Cool in pan on cooling rack about 20 minutes, remove from pan and cool completely for clean, neat slices.

Cinnamon Babka 1  Cinnamon Babka 2

Cinnamon Babka 3  Cinnamon Babka 4

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Challah

Bread. I love bread!

Challah

Challah 1  Challah Rolls

1¾ cups warm water (approx 110°)
2 Tbl dry yeast
3 Tbl sugar
½ cup honey
2 Tbl oil
4 eggs, beaten
1 Tbl salt
8-9 cups bread flour

In bowl of stand mixer, pour warm water, sprinkle yeast over water, and then sprinkle sugar over yeast. Let sit for 5 minutes or until bubbly. Add honey, oil, eggs, and salt. Add flour 1 cup at a time. Add enough flour to make dough that just comes together and starts to pull away from sides of bowl. Knead. Turn dough out into greased or sprayed bowl, turn dough over to coat. Cover with towel and let rise in warm place 1-1½ hours until doubled. Punch down, turn out onto floured surface, and divide in half. At this point you can make two loaves, one loaf and 16 rolls, or 32 rolls.

To make a loaf: Take one half of the dough, divide into four equal parts. Roll each part into an 18″ long rope. I braid my loaf on my greased or silpat lined baking sheet because I don’t like to move it after it is braided. Put the four long dough ropes on the baking sheet side by side. At one end, pinch the four ropes together. Start braiding by taking the rope on the far left, go under two ropes to the right, and back over one rope to the left, lay it down. Take the rope on the far right, go under two ropes to the left, and back over one rope to the right, lay it down. Back to the rope on the far left, go under two ropes to the right, and back over one rope to the left, lay it down. Back to the rope on the far right, go under two ropes to the left, and back over one rope to the right, lay it down. Continue until you are at the end and pinch ends together. Cover and let rise about 30-45 minutes. Gently brush with egg wash and sprinkle with poppy seeds or sesame seeds. Bake in preheated 350° oven for 30-35 minutes.

To make rolls: Take one half of the dough, divide evenly into 16 pieces. Roll each piece into a 18″ long skinny rope. Twist and turn and wrap the rope around itself to make each roll. I wish I had some exact way of doing this but I’m not willing to take the time. ;o) I consider each roll a work of art. Place on greased or silpat lined baking pan. Continue until you have shaped all the rolls. Cover and let rise about 30 minutes. Gently brush with egg wash and sprinkle with poppy seeds or sesame seeds. Bake in preheated 350° oven for 12-15 minutes.

 

Popovers

Make popovers for dinner to go with your soup. Make them for breakfast to eat with butter and jam. Or, make them anytime just because of that amazing crunchy outside and tender delicious inside!

Popovers 1Popovers.jpg1 Tbl butter, melted, cooled
1 cup milk
2 eggs
1 cup flour
1/2 tsp salt

Preheat oven to 400°. Spray a 6-cup popover pan with nonstick spray.
Combine butter, milk, eggs, flour, and salt in blender. Blend for 30 seconds. Divide batter among the 6 popover cups, filling each about half full. Bake 40 minutes, do not open oven door during baking time. Remove from oven. You may want to pierce each popover to let steam escape. Serve warm. You can make popovers in a muffin pan or Pyrex custard cups.

Other Quick Bread Ideas:

Quick Dinner Muffins Quick Dinner Muffins

Corn Bread Muffins Buttery Sour Cream Corn Bread Muffins

Peanut Butter Banana Bread

My little twist on banana bread because I love peanut butter!

Peanut Butter Banana Bread

1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup peanut butter
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
3 overripe bananas, mashed
2¼ cups flour
3/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup buttermilk
3/4 cup peanut butter chips

Preheat oven to 350°. Spray 5 small or 2 regular size loaf pans with nonstick spray.

In large bowl mixing by hand, cream butter, peanut butter, and sugar. Add eggs and banana; mix thoroughly. In smaller bowl, stir together flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Add vanilla to buttermilk. Add dry ingredients and buttermilk alternately to creamed mixture; mix just until combined. Fold in peanut butter chips. Scoop batter evenly into prepared pans, sprinkle tops with a little sugar if desired. Bake 35 minutes (small loaves), 50 minutes (large loaves) or until golden brown and pick in center comes out clean. Cool in pans at least 15 minutes before removing. Cool completely before slicing for clean slices (usually I can wait, messy slices taste just as good).

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No Knead Crusty Bread

Crusty on the outside and tenderly amazing on the inside! One of the most popular recipes ever published in the New York Times, this recipe comes from Jim Lahey of Sullivan Street Bakery. No special ingredients, equipment, or technique, just plain simple and delicious! Mix it up in the evening and bake in the morning or mix it up in the morning and bake it for dinner.
Give it a try!

No Knead Crusty Bread

         No Knead Crusty Bread 1          No Knead Crusty Bread 2

         No Knead Crusty Bread 3          No Knead Crusty Bread 4

3 cups flour
1¾ tsp salt
1/4 tsp instant yeast
1½ cups water

In a large bowl, stir together flour, salt, and yeast. Pour in water and stir until all combined. Dough will be sticky. Cover with plastic wrap. Let sit 12-18 hours, at room temperature (approx 70°). Dough is ready anytime after 12 hours when surface is bubbly and you are ready to bake.

Heat oven to 450°. Pour dough onto heavily floured surface and shape into a ball or oval (depending on your pot).  Cover with plastic wrap and let sit while the pot is heating. Put *pot with lid* into preheated oven to heat for 30 minutes. There is no need to grease or spray pot. Remove hot pot from oven and drop in the dough (careful it’s HOT!).  Cover and return to oven for 30 minutes.  After 30 minutes remove the lid and bake an additional 15 minutes.  Remove bread from oven and place on cooling rack to cool.

* Use a cast iron pot, crock pot insert, glass Pyrex, any 5-7 quart pot with lid that is made for oven use.

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Bacon, Tomato and Cheddar Breakfast Bake with Eggs

My husband and I had this for dinner tonight and loved, loved, loved it! Amazing flavors all baked together and what great presentation. This would be a wonderful addition for a special occasion breakfast, brunch or just because! The recipe comes from foodandwine.com.

Bacon, Tomato, & Cheddar Bake

Bacon, Tomato, Cheddar Bake 2

1 lb white artisan bread, cut into 1″ cubes
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 lb sliced applewood smoked bacon, cut into 1/2″ pieces
1 large onion, halved and thinly sliced
1 (28 oz) can whole Italian tomatoes, drained, chopped and patted dry*
8 oz extra-sharp cheddar, shredded
8 oz Monterey Jack cheese, shredded
2 Tbl snipped chives
1¾ cups chicken broth
8 large eggs (or 6, your choice)

Preheat oven to 350. In large bowl, toss bread with olive oil and spread on large rimmed baking sheet.  Bake for 20 minutes, tossing once, until bread is golden and lightly crispy. Leave oven on.

Meanwhile, in large skillet, cook bacon until crisp.  Transfer bacon to paper towels to drain: reserve 2 Tbl of fat in skillet. Add onion to skillet and cook until softened. Add tomatoes and cook until liquid is evaporated, about 3 minutes.

Return toasted bread cubes to the large bowl.  Add contents of skillet, bacon, shredded cheddar, shredded Monterey Jack, chives and broth. Stir until bread is evenly moistened.  Spread mixture in sprayed 9″x13″ baking dish and cover with lightly foil.

Bake for 30 minutes.  Remove foil and bake until top is crispy, about 15 minutes longer. Remove baking dish from oven and using a ladle, press indentations into bread mixture (you can do 6 or 8). Crack an egg into each indentation. Return dish to oven and bake for about 15 minutes, until egg whites are set but yolks are still runny. Cook longer if you do not want runny yolks. Serve right away while it’s warm.

*I used a 28 oz can petite diced tomatoes, works great and no chopping needed.

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Happy New Year! Top 10 Viewed Recipes in 2014

I wish you all a Happy New Year filled with joy, happiness, and success in all you do. As we close this delicious year and head into another delicious year, I leave you with a recap of the top 10 most viewed posts in 2014. Thanks for stopping by…CHEERS!

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Honey Wheat Bread

One loaf of honey sweetened wheat bread hot out of the oven to bring that heavenly aroma to your kitchen!

Honey Wheat Bread

1½ cups hot water (about 110°)
1 pkt (2¼ tsp) dry yeast
1 tsp sugar
2 Tbl oil
3 Tbl honey
1 cup white flour
1½ tsp salt
2¾-3 cups whole wheat flour

In bowl of stand mixer, pour hot water, sprinkle yeast over water, and then sprinkle the 1 tsp sugar over yeast. Let sit for 5 minutes or until bubbly. Add oil, honey, white flour, and salt. Mix well. Add wheat flour, 1/2 cup at a time, mixing to incorporate. Add enough to make dough that just comes together but is still a bit sticky. Mix until well kneaded. Turn dough out into greased or sprayed bowl, turn dough over to coat. Cover and let rise in warm place 45-60 minutes. Shape into loaf and put in sprayed loaf pan. Let rise in warm place about 30-45 minutes. Bake in preheated 375° oven for 30-35 minutes.

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Coconut Pecan Bread

I need a little something to take when I go visit a friend. A little loaf of bread is perfect!

Coconut Pecan Bread

2½ cups flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
6 Tbl butter, melted
1 cup sugar
2 Tbl oil
2 eggs
1 tsp coconut extract
3/4 cup buttermilk
1 cup shredded coconut
1/2 cup chopped pecans

Preheat oven to 325°. In medium bowl stir together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt; set aside. In large bowl stir together melted butter, sugar, oil, eggs, and coconut extract. Add dry ingredients alternately with buttermilk to butter mixture, stir just until combined. Stir in coconut and pecans. Divide batter evenly between three well sprayed mini loaf pans. Bake 40 minutes or until pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pans for 5 minutes, remove to cooling rack to cool completely.

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