Thursday, February 21, 2013

Braided Bread

A huge thank you to my fabulous sister-in-law for falling upon this recipe. It looks impressive, and tastes even better than it looks. Here's the link to the original recipe here. I made both the plain bread and the cinnamon bread. We ate the plain bread for dinner, and the cinnamon bread was our dessert. We definitely fell in love with it!

Braided Bread
Makes 2 loaves

1/4 cup warm water
1 yeast packet (2 1/2 tsp)
1 Tbsp. sugar
1 cup hot water
1 tsp. salt
1/4 cup sugar
2 Tbsp butter

2 1/2 cups flour
1 egg
1 3/4 - cups flour

In a small bowl stir the warm water, yeast and sugar. Let it sit for 10 minutes and let rise. 

In your  combine the hot water, salt, sugar and butter. Once the yeast mix has risen add the the mixer. Then add in the egg and 2 1/2 cups flour. Mix together using the paddle arm. 

Add 1 3/4 cups flour and mix until the dough pulls away from the bowl and into a ball. If the dough is too sticky add more flour. Take off the paddle arm and put on the hook arm. Turn mixer on to level "2", and let it knead for 7 minutes. 

Spray a large bowl with non-stick cooking spray. Put in the ball of dough and cover with a clean towel. Put it in a warm place and let it rise for a few hours. Punch the dough and let it rest for a few minutes. 

Use a knife to cut in half. Then divide into three pieces and roll out to about 14 inches. Pinch the top of the 3 pieces together and braid, then pinch again at the end. Place on the baking sheet, cover and let it rise for about an hour. 

In a small bowl, whisk an egg and 1 Tbsp. of water. Use a paper towel to brush the top of the bread. 

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Bake for 14-18 minutes or until golden brown. Let the bread sit for 5-10 minutes, and enjoy! We just tear it apart, it was wonderful. 

Cinnamon Loaf
1 Tbsp melted butter
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 1/2 tsp. cinnamon

Spread over the three pieces as you are braiding. Try to keep it all in the middle. Bake at 350 degrees for 16-19 minutes. 

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