Apple and cinnamon bread braid

I have a love / hate relationships with Sundays. I love the morning and hate the evening. The morning is full of promise, no guiltiness for lounging around drinking tea in your pyjamas until lunchtime. But the inevitable always happens, the evening rolls around full of impending doom for the week ahead. Eugh! But lets get back to the morning, a little bit of forward planning on a Saturday night and this bread will make your Sunday morning even better. Minimal work and maximum rewards, if only more things in life could be made as simple.

I made a bit of a boo boo when making these, probably because I was cooking dinner at the same time and making bernaise sauce to go with steak is nobody’s idea of a fun relaxing time. Yes, it split at the last second, I’m blaming the salt I added to it, it was perfect before the salt went in and as soon as it whisked in it split like a bitter divorce. God damn. I woke up in the middle of the night as I sometimes do for a worry and for some reason, the thought came to me straight away, the milk mixture for the bread dough boiled and then I didn’t let it cool before adding to the flour and yeast and so I killed if not murdered the yeast. Don’t do this at home kids. Don’t shock your yeast! If you look after it carefully, you will have pillowy soft bread, kind of like the one I made here previously. This one is a little dense and would be open to criticism from Mr. Hollywood. I’m not sure you would of noticed if I hadn’t told you, but I need to get my secret off my chest. A problem shared is a problem halved.

Notes

  • Do ahead – Make the bread dough the night before you want to bake and leave to rise in the fridge overnight.
  • Do ahead – Roast the apples the night before you want to bake and they will be ready for a quick assembly.
  • Enriched bread dough recipe from Joy of Baking
  • Idea inspired by Eat, Live, Run

Apple and cinnamon bread braid

Ingredients

  • For the bread dough
  • 650g plain flour
  • 7g fast action yeast
  • 240ml milk
  • 75g butter
  • 65g granulated white sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • For the filling
  • 4 Bramley apples, peeled, cored and chopped into chunks
  • 1 braeburn apple, peeled, cored and chopped into chunks
  • 1.5 tbsp ground cinnamon, more or less depending if you love or like cinnamon
  • 3 tbsp vanilla caster sugar
  • 3 tbsp golden sultanas, soaked in a tbsp of brandy (optional) and 3 tbsp boiling water
  • For the glaze
  • 1/2 cup icing sugar, sifted
  • 2 tbsp, or maybe more of icing sugar

Instructions

  1. For the bread
  2. In the mixer with a paddle attachement, combine half the flour with the yeast and mix briefly.
  3. Gently heat the milk, sugar and butter until the butter melts.
  4. Slowly add the liquid to the mixer with the paddle attachment running and mix until combined.
  5. Add the eggs, one at a time and mix well after each addition. Beat on high for a couple of minutes.
  6. Replace the paddle with a dough hook and add the remaining flour.
  7. Knead for about 5 minutes.
  8. Place in a greased bowl and cover with clingfilm. This can be left to slow rise overnight in the fridge or left to double in size for 2 hours.
  9. In the meantime, pre-heat the oven to 180 degrees / 160 fan.
  10. Place the Bramley apples, sugar and cinnamon in a bowl and mix to combine. Place on a baking tray and roast for 20 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool.
  11. After the dough has doubled in size, remove from the bowl and punch out the air. Leave to rest for a few minutes and then roll out into a rectangle size about 30cm x 40cm.
  12. Place the cinnamon apples into the centre, top with the braeburn apple and drained sultanas.
  13. Using a ruller, slice strips into the dough about an inch a part. I found I had to then roll these out a bit thiner to cross the apple mix.
  14. Starting at the top, take one strip and cross it over the apples, then take a strip from the other side and cross it over the first strip. Continue until you reach the end. At the end, pinch the dough together.
  15. Place on a non stick baking tray, cover with a tea-towel and leave for a second rise for about half an hour.
  16. Pre-heat the oven to 180 degrees / 160 fan.
  17. Brush the bread with milk.
  18. Bake for 30 minutes, until golden brown.
  19. Remove from oven, place on a cooling wrack and leave to cool.
  20. To make the glaze, whisk the icing sugar and water together until you have a drizzling consistency, you may need more water. Drizzle this over the cooled loaf.
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3 Responses to Apple and cinnamon bread braid

  1. peggy says:

    I have never made this type of bread! I am very intrigued! Will have to give it a go!
    Ps: i feel same about sundays

  2. Sara says:

    GORGEOUS! What an impressive loaf of bread…looks amazing and I bet it is so delicious!

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