Bread of the Gods (or Cinnamon Sugar Pull-Apart Bread)

This week I made something wonderful. When I read the recipe I knew it would be good but I didn’t realise how good.

Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you, cinnamon sugar pull-apart bread.
 I found this recipe whilst meandering round the pages of one of my absolute favourite food blogs, Joy the Baker. Every time a new post pops up I instantly try to work out where I can fit the recipe into my daily life.  She's brilliant. End of story. 

This bread has it all. For starters, cinnamon and sugar but also the heavenly nutty browned butter and just a hint of nutmeg. It is everything I had hoped for in life.

It is best eaten whilst still warm when it is doughy and oozing with cinnamony goodness. Nick took most of the loaf to work on Friday and I hear it went pretty quickly so I’m assuming it’s still good at room temperature.

This bread takes time but you will reap the rewards. I made it on a Wednesday evening but I think it would make for great leisurely Sunday afternoon baking when you have time to drink coffee while it rises.

Being an American recipe I used cups so I’m not sure of the grams equivalent here. I bought measuring cups off eBay but in the past I have just used a tea cup and things turned out fine.

Makes 1 loaf

Recipe taken from Joy the Baker

For the Dough:
2 3/4 cups plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/4 cup granulated sugar
2 1/4 teaspoons (1 envelope) active dry yeast
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 ounces unsalted butter
1/3 cup whole milk
1/4 cup water
2 large eggs, at room temperature
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

For the Filling:
1 cup granulated sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon fresh ground nutmeg
2 ounces unsalted butter, melted until browned

  1. In a large mixing bowl whisk together 2 cups flour (leaving the 3/4 cup to one side), sugar, yeast, and salt and set aside.
  2. Then, in another bowl, whisk together eggs and set aside.
  3. In a small saucepan, melt together milk and butter until butter has just melted.  Remove from the heat and add water and vanilla extract.  Let mixture stand for a minute or two.
  4. Pour the milk mixture into the dry ingredients and mix with a spatula.  Add the eggs and stir the mixture until the eggs are incorporated into the batter.  The eggs will feel soupy and it will seem like the dough and the eggs are never going to come together.  Keep stirring.  Add the remaining 3/4 cup of flour and stir with the spatula for about 2 minutes.  The mixture will be sticky but that’s fine.
  5. Place the dough is a large,  greased bowl.  Cover with plastic wrap and a clean kitchen towel.  Place in a warm space and allow to rest until doubled in size, about 1 hour.  *The dough can be risen until doubled in size, then refrigerated overnight for use in the morning.  If you’re using this method, just let the dough rest on the counter for 30 minutes before following the roll-out directions below.
  6. While the dough rises, whisk together the sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg for the filling.  Set aside.  Melt 2 ounces of butter until browned.  Set aside.  Grease and flour a 9x5x3-inch loaf pan.  Set that aside too.
  7. Deflate the risen dough and knead about 2 tablespoons of flour into the dough.  Cover with a clean kitchen towel and let rest for 5 minutes.  On a lightly floured work surface, use a rolling pin to roll the dough out.  The dough should be 12-inches tall and about 20-inches long.  If you can’t get the dough to 20-inches long… that’s okay.  Just roll it as large as the dough will go.  Use a pastry brush to spread melted butter across all of the dough.  Sprinkle with all of the sugar and cinnamon mixture.  It might seem like a lot of sugar.  Seriously?  Just go for it.
  8.  Slice the dough vertically, into six equal-sized strips.  Stack the strips on top of one another and slice the stack into six equal slices once again.  You’ll have six stacks of six squares.  Layer the dough squares in the loaf pan like a flip-book.  Place a kitchen towel over the loaf pan and allow in a warm place for 30 to 45 minutes or until almost doubled in size.
  9. Place a rack in the centre of the oven and preheat to 175 degrees C.  Place loaf in the oven and bake for 30 to 35 minutes, until the top is very golden brown.  The top may be lightly browned, but the center may still be raw.  A nice, dark, golden brown will ensure that the center is cooked as well.
  10. Remove from the oven and allow to rest for 20 to 30 minutes.   Run a butter knife around the edges of the pan to loosen the bread and invert onto  a clean board.  Place a cake stand or cake plate on top of the upside down loaf, and carefully invert so it’s right side up.  Serve warm with coffee or tea.