This bread is virtually the No-Knead recipe I posted in October, with a few alterations. It's a cinch to make, hardly any maintenance, but does take 12-18 hours to rise. So start it the day before you want it. For those of you who have had little luck with yeast breads, you'll love how fool-proof this is.
The only real trick, in my opinion, is getting the water temperature just right for the yeast. My way of doing this is crazy and I don't exactly recommend it, although it works for me every time. I basically put my finger under running water until it's just too hot for me to stand, but not hot enough for me yell. I know there are better ways (a thermometer, perchance?) but I'm old fashioned in the kitchen, including measuring. I generally don't. My husband wonders why I don't measure, and I don't have an answer for him. I know it makes sense, to guarantee that the recipe comes out perfect.....I guess I love how food comes out different every time.
However, it's hard to post a recipe when I'm just throwing things around, so I've done my best to gauge amounts. Tinker if you will.
Easy Whole Wheat Cinnamon Raisin Bread
2 C whole wheat flour
1 C white whole wheat flour
2 pinches sea salt
1 packet active dry yeast
1/2 C raisins
1-2 tsp. cinnamon
approx 2 C. tepid water (less water by about 1/2 C if using white flour)
Mix dry ingredients including yeast. Then add water and mix until sticky and shaggy. This picture shows that I need more water. Dough should be fairly moist all over.
Cover bowl with plastic wrap and let it rest for between 12 and 18 hours, room temperature.
Then turn dough onto lightly floured surface, sprinkle with a little flour, and fold it over once on itself. Cover loosely with plastic wrap for about 15 minutes.
Using lightly floured hands, quickly and gently fold dough into a ball, and place on lightly floured towel, seam down. Dust with more flour. Cover with another towel and let rise for 2 to 3 hours. Should double in size after rising:
At least 30 minutes before putting dough in oven, heat oven to 450 degrees and put in a heavy cast iron pot (or enamel, Pyrex or ceramic) that is at least 3.5 quarts to 8 quarts. When dough is ready, carefully remove pot from oven and turn dough over into pot. Shake pot once or twice if dough is not evenly distributed. Cover with lid and bake 30 minutes. Then remove lid and bake another 15 minutes, until loaf is nicely browned. Cool on rack.
While the bread was still warm, I cut a few slices and slathered them with butter (Earth Balance) and just a light smear of honey. I find this bread delicious and especially rustic. Each bite with raisins is heavenly. I'll add more next time.
I can't resist showing you my dog, Annie. She put up with us while we had cabin fever during the blizzard last week. She pretends like she hates wearing glasses, but she knows she'll get treats if she poses for the camera. The abuse!