Our perfect breakfast loaf has a soft crust, lots of sultanas (or raisins) and gorgeous aromas of cinnamon and nutmeg. Sourdough Cinnamon Bread is a great wintery loaf that’s perfect for slicing and toasting! We love it slathered with salted butter next to a strong morning coffee! It makes a perfect Christmas morning loaf too!
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What Does Cinnamon Raisin Sourdough Taste Like?
This loaf is somewhere between standard white sourdough bread and brioche. Whilst the dough is enriched with milk and butter, it isn’t nearly as buttery or sweet as a brioche. The texture of the bread is firmer, but it isn’t as airy as our Crusty Sourdough Loaf which makes it perfect for toasting and buttering, without butter melting through the wholes.
The cinnamon loaf has a soft crust similar to sandwich bread. And whilst the raisins provide some sweetness, it really isn’t very sweet making it ideal (and extremely versatile) bread for both sweet and savoury toppings.
The Importance Of A Good Sourdough Starter
An absolute must, as with any other sourdough bread, is an active starter. You need to use it at its peak, but before it starts deflating. At the beginning of my sourdough ventures, I didn’t have patience. If the recipe asked for the starter to be left to rise for 4 hours, I did just that, not taking into account the temperature of my kitchen or how much my starter actually rises in that time.
Feed your starter and wait until it at least doubles before using. If it doesn’t double within 5 hours, you may need to consider feeding it again, or even for a couple of days to revive it. The point is, if you want your sourdough to rise, you need to use a healthy active starter with strong yeast colonies and low acidity.
Ingredients and Equipment Needed
You will ideally need a stand mixer with a dough hook attachment for this recipe, but if you don’t have one, don’t worry too much. The dough will be sticky to start with, but you can still knead it by hand with the help of a dough scraper. Once you start performing the folds, you will see your dough transform into a soft and elastic dough that is a lot more manageable and less sticky.
You will also need a 2lbs loaf tin to take the bread in.
This Cinnamon Raisin Sourdough uses simple everyday ingredients, most of which the majority of us have in our kitchen at any one time.
- active sourdough starter: strong and active, 100% hydration.
- strong bread flour: we use all white flour, but you may substitute up to a third of white bread flour with whole wheat or spelt flour.
- spices: cinnamon and nutmeg, or substitute the two with mixed spice.
- raisins or sultanas: or the mixture of the two.
- milk: dairy milk works best, especially one with high-fat content.
- butter: unsalted, at room temperature. If you’re using salted butter, make sure to reduce the amount of salt you’re adding to this loaf.
Once you have your starter doubled and bubbling, mix all the dough ingredients in a large bowl of a stand mixer. With a dough hook attachment, knead the dough on medium speed for about 5 minutes. Then start adding cubed room temperature butter. One piece at a time, drop them into the running mixer and knead until all butter is well incorporated.
The dough will be quite wet. Scoop it out into a greased shallow dish, and turn it once in it to cover all the surface of the dough with oil. Then cover with a tea towel. For the next 3-4 hours, every 30 minutes, I uncover the dough and perform a set of coil folds (video of the method below), or you can use a stretch-and-fold method. Whichever method you use, I recommend that you either grease your fingers first or dip them in cold water to prevent the dough from sticking to your hands.
Three or four hours later your dough should feel more elastic, a lot softer and much less sticky. Leave your sourdough cinnamon bread to rise for another hour, then clingfilm and pop in the fridge to cold proof overnight.
In the morning, take the dough out of the fridge and scoop it out onto a lightly floured surface. Shape it into a rough rectangle, then fold the top third down towards the centre. Fold the bottom third up and over (see photos). Then turn a quarter of a turn and flatten slightly. Repeat the folds again. You should be left with a little roll. Stretch it lengthways a little to match the length of your loaf tin.
Line a 2 lbs loaf tin with baking parchment. Then pop your sourdough log in it, cover with greased clingfilm and leave in a warm spot to prove again for 4-6 hours until it doubles in size.
Once doubled, brush the top of your Sourdough Cinnamon and Raisin Bread with a tbsp of milk and pop it in the oven to bake for 30-35 minutes. It should sound hollow tapped on the bottom and have a crusty brown top (which will soften as it cools).
Leave the loaf in its tin for 10 minutes, then remove it by pulling on the overhanging baking parchment and place it on a cooling rack for at least 1 hour before slicing.
When baked late in the evening on Christmas Eve and left to cool overnight, it makes a wonderful Christmas Sourdough Loaf to enjoy for Christmas breakfast!
What To Serve Sourdough Cinnamon Raisin Bread With?
This fruity and aromatic sourdough loaf is a wonderful bread to serve alongside charcuterie or a cheeseboard. It can be served fresh on the day that it’s baked, or sliced and toasted the next day. It also makes a perfect breakfast loaf and is delicious with butter and jam.
If your sourdough cinnamon bread has gone a bit stale after a couple of days, make a delicious french toast!
How To Store This Fruity Loaf?
Ideally, you want to eat this beautiful cinnamon raisin sourdough on the day that it is baked, but if you have leftovers there’re a couple of options for how to store it.
Once the bread has cooled down to room temperature, store it in an airtight container, unsliced in a dark cupboard for up to 2 days. It is best to lightly toast it if you’re eating it the next day!
Alternatively, slice the loaf and place it in ziplock bags or airtight containers and freeze for up to 4 months. You can then defrost and warm the slices as you need them in the toaster!
Other Sourdough Recipes
If you like baking with sourdough starter, here are some of the recipes we love:
- Sourdough Brioche with Scented with Vanilla & Lemon
- Overnight Sourdough Focaccia with Olives and Mixed Herbs
- Herby Sourdough Crackers
If you are a beginner and would like to make your own sourdough starter, check out our articles below:
Sourdough Cinnamon Bread
- 75 g active sourdough starter 100% hydration
- 230 g strong bread flour
- 1½ tsp cinnamon
- ¼ tsp nutmeg
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 50 g raisins or sultanas
- 125 ml milk plus extra for brushing
- 75 ml water
- 30 g butter room temperature
The Night Before Or 4 Hours in Advance:
- Feed your starter. Use 100% hydration starter for this recipe and feed it the ratio of 1 part starter : 1 part flour : 1 part water if feeding 4-6hours in advance. If leaving overnight, you may want to feed in the ratio of 1:2:2 or even 1:3:3 if your kitchen is warm. Leave it to rise until at least doubles in volume. Use before it starts to deflate.
- In a large bowl of your stand mixer, mix all the dough ingredients except for butter and knead on medium speak for 5 minutes. You can knead by hand on a lightly floured surface, but it may take a bit longer.
- Add the soft cubed butter, little bit at a time, and keep on mixing/kneading until butter is fully incorporated. The dough should look less sticky and slightly shiny once you've finished. It will be rather wet though.
- Transfer the dough into a shallow well-greased dish. Turn once to coat, then cover with a tea towel and leave in a warm spot to rest for 4 hours. For the first 3 hours, every 30 minutes, uncover the bowl and perform a set of coil-folds or stretch-and-folds (see text above for details). Then leave to rise for another hour. If your dough is still sticky and not very elastic, you may want to do a couple of extra folds and let it rise for an extra hour.
- Then cover the bowl with clingfilm and pop it in the fridge to cold-proof til the next morning.
- Line a loaf tin with baking parchment.
- Take the dough out of the fridge and scoop onto a lightly floured surface. Stretch it out into a rectangele. Fold the top third down to the middle, then fold the bottom third up – like A4 sheet of paper before you put it in an envelope. See photos abive. You should end up with a little roll. Stretch it out to the length of your loaf tin and gently place it in the tin.
- Leave the dough to prove in a warm spot for 4-6 hours, or until it doubles.
- Preheat the oven to 200°C Fan. Brush the top of the loaf with some milk. Then bake in the oven for 35 minutes until the top is dark golden brown. Remove from the tin. Cooked loaves should feel light and sound hollow when tapped on the bottom.
- Cool completely on a wire rack before slicing. This bread makes excellent toast! We love it with some salted butter!