Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Cinnamon bread

So with the family coming into town next month, I decided to try out some recipes of things they love. I'm hoping to avoid some of the goofs you make the first time you make a recipe since this is the first Thanksgiving I'm hosting.

The first recipe I'm trying is cinnamon bread. My family loves cinnamon bread and the only time we really eat it is during the holidays. I thought I would make some for our breakfasts during their visit.

I need some help with this recipe. It would not rise at all. I even let the dough sit overnight, hoping it would rise up miraculously. But it didn't. :( It tastes wonderful, if a bit too dense. I'm attesting the denseness to the fact it wouldn't rise. Does yeast need to be refrigerated? My jar of yeast says so but then nothing rises when I use it. Do I need to let it come to room temp before using it and then what is the sense of keeping it in the fridge?

Here is the recipe for cinnamon bread:
from: Pioneer Woman (full recipe @ link)
1 cup of milk
6 tablespoons butter
2 1/2 teaspoons active dry yeast
2 whole eggs, room temp
1/3 cup sugar
3 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp salt
1/3 cup brown sugar
2 tablespoons of cinnamon
egg and milk beaten together, for brushing the top of bread before baking
softened butter for smearing and greasing

  • Melt butter with milk. heat until warm but not boiling. Cool until still warm to the touch but not hot. Sprinkle yeast on top, stir gently and allow to sit for 10 minutes.
  • Combine flour and salt. Set aside
  • Mix sugar and eggs with paddle attachment until combined. Pour in milk/butter/yeast mixture and stir to combine.
  • Add half the flour mixture and stir until combined.
  • Add the other half of the flour mixture and stir until combined. 
  • Switch to the dough hook attachment (if you have one) and knead dough on medium speed for 10 minutes. If dough is too sticky, add 1/4 more of flour and knead for 5 more minutes. 
  • Heat a metal or glass bowl so it's warm. Run hot water in the bowl and allow to sit for a few minutes. Bowl should be warm by then. 
  • Drizzle olive oil in heated bowl and toss dough to coat. Let sit for at least 2 hours.
  • Remove dough from bowl and onto a floured work surface. Roll into a rectangle no wider than the the loaf pan you are using and about 18-24 inches long. 
  • Smear with softened butter. Combine brown sugar and cinnamon in a bowl and sprinkle over dough. 
  • Roll dough into a log, keeping it tight and contained. Pinch the seam and edges to seal.
  • Smear loaf pan with butter or cooking spray. 
  • Place dough seam down, cover with saran wrap, and let rise for another 2 hours (at least)
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Bake bread for 35-40 minutes. Remove from loaf pan and allow to cool. FYI: The juices from the sugar will settle during this time so I wouldn't cool it on a wire rack.

Okay friends, what did I do wrong? Is yeast supposed to be cold? If not, why would the jar say so? I'm so confused.

Here's a pic of my delicious if very dense-like cinnamon bread.


  1. What a delicious way to prepare for the upcoming Thanksgiving. Regarding the yeast, I've never heard of yeast needing to be refrigerated. Did it foam up after sitting in the milk mixture? If not, then that means the yeast was no longer live (either because it was no good to begin with or the milk mixture was too hot and killed it). That's one problem I've encountered before leading to my own denser rolls. If that wasn't the problem, I'd then ask what the temperature was in the place where you left the dough. If it wasn't warm enough, the dough also would not rise.

  2. Thanks for the help, Lisa! It foamed up a little, not too foamy though. I never thought about the milk mixture being too hot. This was the first I proofed yeast with milk so I guess there is always a learning curve!

  3. This looks delish! I think I may have to make it! But, I agree with Lisa..I have never heard of yeast having to be refrigerated.

  4. I thought yeast just needed to be stored in a cool, dry place but the bottle says to refrigerate or freeze after opening. I think I'll believe you both and keep it stored in the pantry. :)

  5. I store my jarred yeast in the refrigerator (per label instructions), then measure out what I need and let it come to room temperature before using it. Haven't had any problems over the years doing it this way. Also use an instant read thermometer when using heated mixtures because I'm never sure about that "warm to the touch" instruction. Hope this helps.


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