Monday, March 14, 2011

Cinnamon Raisin Walnut Bread

The moment my eyes caught this Cinnamon Raisin Walnut Bread on my lastest bread book - The Bread Baker's Apprentice by Peter Reinhart ... ( okay ,okay... I know I have been raving about this book ..just bear with me for a while more :p  ) I knew I have to make it and it turned out exactly what the author described in the book.   Yea..this is indeed a light, flavorful and loaded with raisins bread and like what the author says " it has a wonderful finish, filling your mouth with the satisfying aftertaste of roasted walnuts  "  truly a wonderful bread to make :)  Mmmmm all the effort of kneading and proofing and baking paid off...the aroma of cinnamon from the freshly baked bread is to die for.  A wonderful Sunday well spent.... knowing that the coming Monday blues will be blown away with this lovely cinnamon flavored bread !

This is the second bread recipe I have tried out from the book and I am not disappointed with it.  This book is my bread bible and I am going to order another one of his bread soon.  I am waiting for some Spring sale from Book Depository before I order it :p  The photos below are for me to reminisce on later in life when I am no longer able to knead with my hand :)   I tweaked it a bit by adding a layer of melted chocolate on the flatten rolled out dough before I rerolled it for proofing.  It tasted good with the dark chocolate .  It blends well with the cinnamon and nuts.

The bread is indeed light and flavorful...WB and myself could not resist it and we hleped ourselves to them after it was cut into slices.  A keeper no doubt and I will be making more from this book. Stay tuned if you are on a bread fever like me :)   or get the book and have fun together with Peter Reinhart :) 

Cinnamon Raisin Walnut Bread - adapted from The Bread Baker's Apprentice - Peter Reinhart
Makes two 1 1/2- pound loaves

3 1/2 cups ( 16 ozs) unbleached bread flour
4 tsps ( .66 oz ) granulated sugar
1 1/4 tsp ( .31 oz) salt
2 tsps ( .22 oz ) instant yeast
1 1/4 tsps  ( .16 oz ) ground cinnamon
1 large ( 1.65 ozs) egg, slightly beaten
2 tbsps ( 1 oz) shortening, melted or at room temperature
1/2 cup ( 4 ozs) buttermilk or whole milk, at room temperature
3/4 cup ( 6 ozs) water, at room temperature
1 1/2 cups ( 9 ozs) raisins, rinsed and drained
1 cup ( 4 ozs) chopped walnuts


1.  Stir together the flour, sugar, salt ,  yeast , and cinnamon in a mixing bowl ( or in the bowl of an electric mixer ). Add the egg, shortening, buttermilk, and water. Stir together with a large spoon ( or mix on low speed with the paddle attachement ) until the ingredients come together and form a ball. Adjust with flour or water if the dough seems too sticky or too dry and stiff.

2.  Sprinkle flour on a counter, transfer the dough to the counter, and begin kneading ( or mixing on medium speed, switching to the dough hook ) . The dough should be soft and pliable, tacky but not sticky. Add flour as you knead ( or mix) , if necessary, to achieve this texture. Knead by hand for approximately 10 minutes ( or by machine for 6-8 minutes ). sprinkle in the raisins and walnuts during the final 2 minutes of kneading ( or mixing ) to distribute them evenly and to avoid crushing them too much. ( if you are mixing by machine, you may have to finish kneading by hand to distribute the raisins and walnuts evenly ) The dough should pass the windownpane test and register 77 deg to 81deg F. Lightly oil a large bowl and transfer the dough to the bowl, rolling it to coat it with oil. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap.

3.  Ferment at room temperature for approximately 2 hours, or until the dough doubles in size.

4.  Divide the dough into 2 equal pieces and form them into loaves, as shown on page 81. Place each loaf in a lightly oiled 8 1/2 by  4 1/2 inch pan, mist the tops with spray oil, and cover loosely with plastic wrap.

5.  Proof at room termperature for 60 -90 minutes, or until the dough crests above the lips of the pans and is nearly doubled in size.

6.  Preheat the oven to 350 deg F with the oven rack on the middle shelf. Place the loaf pans on a sheet pan, making sure they are not touching each other.

7.  Bake the loaves for 20 minutes. Rotate the pan 180 degrees for even baking and continue baking for another 20-30 minutes, depending on the oven. he finished breads should register 190 deg F in the center and be golden brown on top and lightly golden on the sides and bottom. They should make a hollow sound when thumped on the bottom.

8.  Immediately remove the breads from their pans an cool on a rack for at least 1 hour, preferably 2 hours before slicing or serving.

Enjoy !

If you are a seirous home baker and wish to raise your level of baking
several notches, then apprentice yourself to master bread baker Peter Reinhart in his
new cookbook, The Bread Baker's Apprentice.
he instructs with gusto in this delightful and comprehensive volume.
- Bernard Clayton, author of The Breads of France -

*           *            *


  1. Beautifully baked .. it came out really neat and i bet it taste yummmyyy!!!

  2. OOOOH !!! I want thisssss !!!!!!!!

  3. Wow! what a lovely airy bread, looks perfect.

  4. Great of you to post all the recipes for the bread that you've tried and your bread looks almost like those in the book! Fluffy! Will try it out later when I have cleared some to do list, it is getting very long!

  5. of my favorite breads. Beautiful job on this.

  6. A really gorgeous loaf of bread and I love cinnamon bread. One of my favs!

  7. Hi Elin, love this. Anymore left? I think 3 pieces with iced coffee will be fine with me, ha ha.
    Have a nice day.

  8. Those swirls are picture perfect!

  9. after all the breads that you've tempted me, now you're tempting me to buy this book!

  10. What a glorious combo of sweet wonderful flavros!

    Great blog; happy I found you!

    Mary xx
    Delightful Bitefuls

  11. the bread look so nice! now i feel like buying the book! :D

  12. This is the first bread I made from the BBA book and I know I have to try it again. It was delicious, amazing as french toast!

  13. Like you, I was addicted to bread baking too. I have so much to explore and try at this moment. This bread looks very delicious. Will bookmark this and give it a try. Got to check out this book too.

  14. Sunshine...yup it is a great bread..especially if you toast them...:)

    Jo...shall bake again when you are home :) better than Toast'Em LOL! serious!

    Umm Mymoonah...thanks :)

    Jeannie..hope you will try this is nice :)

    Briarrose...thanks :)

    Jo....thanks :)

    Uncle Lee...thanks for dropping by and haha you are a bit late...all in the Piggies tummy :p yup with a hot or cold cup of coffee would be great :)

    Tiffany...thanks :) will not regreat buying his book. Great investment ! :)

    Mary...thanks for dropping by :) will love the book...informative if your are keen in bread making :)

    Wilde ....yup and I am glad I found another BBA fan :) will love this book..very informative and lots of artisan bread recipe and after reading the book, I feel like I have to bread making classes :)

  15. Hello,

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  16. It looks delicious!I followed you from the foodie blog roll and I'd love to guide Foodista readers to your site. I hope you could add this raisin widget at the end of this post so we could add you in our list of food bloggers who blogged about recipes with raisins,Thanks!

  17. looks exactly like the one on the page!

  18. Camelia...thanks . Have added to Petitchef :)

    Alisa...added the raisin widget :) Thanks! taste good too :)

  19. The sweet smell of cinnamon is enough to make you salivate. Great looking fluffy bread!