Baking Bread: Cinnamon Raisin

I don’t have a bread machine, dough hooks, a rolling pin, or much counter space, for that matter. But I do have a bowl, a spoon, a few basic ingredients, and a desire to overcome my fear of baking something so falsely intimidating.

Try it. I dare you.

And the best part is … the bread, which can be served round the clock.

Breakfast: Serve toasted with a drizzle of honey and a side of cottage cheese.
Lunch: Serve with a scoop of light chicken salad on a bed of greens.
Dinner: Serve with an entree of honey-glazed salmon.
Dessert: Serve with a scoop of low-fat coffee ice cream.

Homemade Cinnamon Raisin Bread

Cinnamon Raisin Bread
Cinnamon Raisin Bread

(Makes 1 loaf)

Warm milk in small saucepan until it bubbles. Remove from heat and let cool until lukewarm. Dissolve yeast in warm water and set aside until frothy. Mix in eggs, sugar, butter or margarine, salt, and raisins. Stir in cooled milk. Gradually add flour to make a stiff dough. Knead dough on a lightly floured surface, about 10 minutes. Place in greased mixing bowl and turn to coat dough. Cover with damp cloth and let rise until doubled, about 1 hour and 30 minutes.

Press or roll out on lightly floured surface into large rectangle 1/2 inch thick. Sprinkle 2 teaspoons milk over dough. Mix together 1/4 cup sugar and 3 teaspoons cinnamon, and sprinkle mixture on top of dough. Roll up tightly, about 3 inches in diameter, and tuck under ends. Place loaf into well greased 9 x 5-inch pan. Lightly grease top and allow to rise again for 1 hour.

Bake at 350 F for 45 minutes, or until loaf is lightly browned. Remove from pan and brush with melted butter or margarine. Let cool before slicing.