Iberries on. I watch for sales and for coupons so that I can get them at a good price. As soon as I get home, though, I want to use them all up in baking projects. For this easy recipe, I added applesauce and the dried cranberries to my bread dough..
Yield: 1-1/2 pound braided loaf.
Prep Time: 2 hours, 15 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 3 hours
- 3/4 cup milk, room temperature
- 2 tsp active dry yeast
- 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
- 1-1/2 Tbsp butter or margarine
- 2 Tbsp brown sugar
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1-1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 cup dried cranberries
- 3 cups bread flour, about
- In medium bowl, mix milk and yeast. Add applesauce, butter, brown sugar, ground cinnamon, salt, and dried cranberries. Stir. Add 2 cups of 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 three equal pieces. Roll each of the 3 pieces of dough between your hands, making 3 ropes, about 15 inches long. Line strips side-by-side on floured board and pinch the top ends together. Braid strips and pinch bottom ends together. Set braided loaf on greased baking sheet. Cover and let rise in warm, draft-free place for 45 minutes or until doubled in size.
- Bake loaf at 350 degrees F for 40 to 45 minutes or until the bread is golden brown. Remove loaf from sheet and let cool on rack.
Bread Baking Tips:
- 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.
- To keep bread soft, store in a plastic bag.
- You can replace the cranberries in this recipe with a half cup of raisins or currants.
- Keep yeast stored in an airtight container and in the refrigerator. Heat, moisture, and air kills the yeast and prevents bread dough from rising.
- 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.
- 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.
- Bread flour has a higher amount of gluten than all-purpose flour. This means that bread made with bread flour will rise higher than bread made with all-purpose flour. You can make your own bread flour by adding 1-1/2 teaspoons gluten to each cup of all-purpose flour you use in your bread recipe.