Toasted and buttered, this bread reminds us of freshly baked cinnamon rolls. We recommend having it with a cup of coffee or tea and some charming company. Prep and Cook Time: 4 hours.
2 tablespoons active dry yeast
2 tablespoons honey
6 to 7 cups bread flour, divided, plus more for shaping
1/2 cup whole-wheat flour
1/2 cup dark brown sugar
1/2 cup dried low-fat or nonfat milk
4 teaspoons salt
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
2 teaspoons ground cardamom
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1 1/2 cups chopped pecans
Butter for bowl and pans
How to Make It
In the bowl of a stand mixer, dissolve yeast and honey in 1 1/2 cups warm water (90° to 105°). Let sit until foamy, about 5 minutes.
Attach dough hook and, with mixer on medium, mix in 2 eggs, 2 cups bread flour, the whole-wheat flour, brown sugar, dried milk, salt, vanilla, cardamom, cinnamon, pepper, nutmeg, and pecans. Add remaining 4 to 5 cups bread flour, 1/2 cup at a time, until dough pulls away from the inside of bowl. Knead (with mixer on medium) until smooth and elastic, adding more flour as necessary to keep dough from sticking too much. When ready, dough should feel a bit like an earlobe when you pinch it.
Transfer dough to a large, lightly buttered bowl. Cover with a clean towel or plastic wrap and let sit until doubled in bulk, about 1 1/2 hours. Meanwhile, butter two 8-in. loaf pans and set aside.
Punch down dough, divide in half, and, on a lightly floured surface, shape each half into an 8-in. oblong loaf. Put dough in pans, cover, and let sit until doubled in bulk, about 1 hour.
Preheat oven to 350°. In a small bowl, beat remaining egg with 2 tbsp. water. Brush dough with egg wash and bake until brown, about 35 minutes. Remove loaves from pans (they're done if they sound hollow when tapped on the bottom) and cool on wire racks.
Note: Nutritional analysis is per 1/2-in. slice.
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