If you make your own applesauce this year, remember to set some aside on the freezer for bread baking. This delicious recipe for apple raisin bread makes two beautiful braided loaves for gift giving and for bringing to Thanksgiving dinner.
Yield: 2 small braided loaves.
Prep Time: 2 hours
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Total Time: 2 hours, 35 minutes
- 1/4 cup water, room temperature
- 2-1/4 tsp (1 pkg. or 1/4 oz.) active dry yeast
- 1 cup milk, room temperature
- 1/2 cup old fashioned rolled oats
- 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
- 2 Tbsp brown sugar
- 1-1/2 Tbsp soft butter or margarine
- 1-1/2 tsp salt
- 1/3 cup raisins
- 3 cups bread flour, about
- In medium bowl, mix water and yeast. Add milk, oats, applesauce, brown sugar, butter, salt, and raisins. Stir. Add 2 cups of bread flour and mix well. Slowly add in remaining flour, enough flour to make a dough that follows the spoon around the bowl. Turn dough out onto lightly floured surface and knead for 4 minutes, adding more flour as needed until the dough is soft and smooth to the touch. Place dough in medium greased bowl. Turn dough over in bowl so that the top is also lightly greased. Cover with clean cloth and let rise in warm, draft-free place for 1 hour or until doubled in size.
- Punch down dough. Turn dough out onto lightly floured board and knead for 4 minutes or until the bubbles are out of the bread. Divide dough into 6 equal pieces. Roll each piece of dough between your hands, making 6 ropes, about 8 inches long. Braid 3 strips together twice, making two small loaves of bread. Set braided loaves on greased baking sheet. Cover and let rise in warm, draft-free place for 45 minutes or until doubled in size.
- Bake loaves at 350 degrees F for 35 minutes or until the bread is golden brown. Remove loaves from sheet and let cool on rack.
Bread Baking Tips:
- When measuring out brown sugar, always pack it down into the measuring cup or spoon unless the recipe tells you to do otherwise.
- Store brown sugar into an airtight container to keep it from becoming hard.
- Store flour properly to keep it from spoiling.
- You can use any type of milk in this recipe: whole milk, skim, low fat, etc. Milk can also be replaced with water and nonfat dry milk.
- Milk can be replaced with soy milk.
- There is a milk to dry milk powder conversion table. Use it to figure out how much dry milk to add to the water when replacing the milk in the recipe.
- Keep yeast stored in an airtight container and in the refrigerator. Heat, moisture, and air kills the yeast and prevents bread dough from rising.
- To keep bread soft, store in a plastic bag.
- Spraying loaves with water while they bake will produce a crispy crust.
- Brush loaves with egg white before baking to produce a shiny crust.
- Brush loaves with milk before baking to produce a dark, shiny crust.
- Brush loaves with butter immediately after baking to produce a soft crust.