Happy New Year everyone! I hope that all of you guys are off to a good start so far. I know I am and I’m ready to go for this year. I have so many things in plan for this year, but I don’t want to let the cat out of the bag just yet, I want to make sure that everything is in place before I make any official announcements. All I can say is that I’m really trying to put more effort into playing a bigger part in my community.
On another note I’ve been baking like crazy (did you see my stained glass cookie experiment?) and I’ve really been digging into some of my vintage cookbooks lately. I came across this recipe in an old Fannie Farmer book. It sounded like this really elegant bread, but to be honest it tastes (my version) just like cinnamon raisin bread. If you leave the raisins and the cinnamon out, it tastes just like regular white bread. It’s very similar to a brioche. The one thing that I changed about this recipe is the use of nuts. I left them out simply because I had none, but you can certainly add them if you wish.
It’s best eaten toasted on the stove top with a little butter.
Swedish Tea Bread
1/2 cup melted butter
2/3 cup sugar
1 teaspoon salt
2 1/4 cups hot milk
1 package of dry yeast, or 2 1/4 teaspoons of active dry yeast
1 egg, well beaten
1 teaspoon almond extract
7 cups white flour
1/2 cup melted butter
1/2 cup sugar
1 tablespoon cinnamon
3/4 cup raisins
1 egg mixed with 1 teaspoon of water (egg wash)
Mix the butter, sugar, salt, and hot milk in a stand mixer with the dough hook attachment and let cool to lukewarm.
Stir the yeast into 1/4 cup warm water and let it stand for 5 minutes to dissolve. Add the dissolved yeast, egg, almond extract, and 3 cups of flour to stand mixer, until completely mixed. Add 3 more cups of flour and mix well. Turn on to a lightly floured counter, knead for a minute or two (dough will be very sticky) let rest for 10 minutes.
Gradually add the remaining flour to the rested dough by kneading the bread by hand to incorporate the remaining flour. Knead until smooth and elastic. Put the dough in a large buttered bowl, cover and let rise in a warm place until double in bulk.
After the dough has risen, punch it down, knead it for a minute or two, and divide it in half. Roll and shape the first piece with your hands into a long thin roll. Using a rolling pin and an unfloured board, roll it into a thin rectangle, about 7 x 16 inches. It will stick to the board but may easily be lifted with a knife.
Spread with melted butter and sprinkle with sugar, cinnamon, and raisins. Starting with the long side, roll like a jelly roll. Trim, if necessary and join the ends to form a ring. Place on a buttered parchment lined baking sheet and make perpendicular cuts, with scissors about 1 inch a part and then spread open, so that one side falls flat. Repeat with the other piece of dough. Cover and let rise to almost double in bulk. Using a pastry brush, brush egg wash all over the top of the loaves. Bake for 25-30 minutes, until deep golden brown, rotating halfway through.
As usually let me know how this recipe worked out for you and leave a comment below!