To start you need to warm up some milk and butter. Use only the best stuff you can get. The butter of course was Kerrygold...my all time favorite! Let this cool down, you want it to be warm, but not hot and not cold.
I was tired when I made this, but there are the little yeasts dying a horrible miserable death. Instead of taking a warm bath in butter and milk, activating their delicious gas...I scalded and murdered each and everyone of them. "Too hot" they were screaming.
This recipe is a sweet bread, so you need some sugar. And why the heck not, use some vanilla sugar if you have it lying around.
Butter, milk, sugar, eggs, flour and dead yeast. That's my dough there. A little sticky, waiting to rise. 90 minutes later, it's still sitting there, just a little flatter and more sad looking. I really did kill the yeast. Yeast needs a moist, warm environment to start the rising process. You kill the process with extreme heat and slow the process with cold. So what to do? After that 90 minute rest I proofed new yeast in warm milk, with a pinch of sugar. I waited a few minutes for the mixture to get foamy and start to smell super--the smell of fermentation! With that, I poured the happily proofed yeast into the boring dough and started kneading in the mixer again. And I started adding new flour. I total, I probably had to add an additional cup of flour, give or take. the dough now felt like proper dough and within a few minutes of resting, was rising! Woo hoo...I fixed it!!!!
90 minutes later, the blob was about to pour over the giant bowl I had it in.
I just tapped the top of the dough and it started to deflat, belching all the day down the bowl.
I nudged the dough out of the bowl, onto a floured surface and started to press it out into a large rectangle. Hold up your bread pans to make sure the size it going to fit. This was for two loafs.
Dump a bunch of cinnamon sugar on the dough, going all the way to the edge.
Roll the dough up and drop it into the pans, seam side down. Allow to rest for another 90 minutes to two hours.
Brush the loafs with an egg wash...liberally!
Bake for 40 minutes in a 350 degree oven. My loafs overflowed and started kissing each other. Make sure to invite guests over to your house at this time. The cinnamon aromas wafting about will drive people nuts!
Let the loafs rest for a few minutes to cool, then slice with a large bread knife. If you can, toast it. Or, just eat it warm, with more Kerrygold butter!
Mmmm, butter! Seriously...I started giggling and had tears in my eyes when I had my first bite. So good.
From The Pioneer Woman Cooks
For 1 loaf
1 cup Milk
6 TB Butter
2½ tsp Active Dry Yeast
2 whole Eggs
1/3 cups Sugar
3½ cups All-purpose Flour
1 tsp Salt
1/3 cups Sugar
2 TB Cinnamon
Egg and Milk, Mixed Together, For Brushing
Softened Butter, For Smearing And Greasing
Melt butter with milk. Heat until very warm, but don’t boil. Allow to cool until still warm to the touch, but not hot. Sprinkle yeast over the top, stir gently, and allow to sit for 10 minutes.
Combine flour and salt.
In the bowl of an electric mixer, mix sugar and eggs with the paddle attachment until combined. Pour in milk/butter/yeast mixture and stir to combine. Add half the flour and beat on medium speed until combined. Add the other half and beat until combined.
Switch to the dough hook attachment and beat/knead dough on medium speed for ten minutes. If dough is overly sticky, add 1/4 cup flour and beat again for 5 minutes.
Heat a metal or glass mixing bowl so it’s warm. Drizzle in a little canola oil, then toss the dough in the oil to coat. Cover bowl in plastic wrap and set it in a warm, hospitable place for at least 2 hours.
Turn dough out onto the work surface. Roll into a neat rectangle no wider than the loaf pan you’re going to use, and about 18 to 24 inches long. Smear with 2 tablespoons melted butter. Mix sugar and cinnamon together, then sprinkle evenly over the butter-smeared dough. Starting at the far end, roll dough toward you, keeping it tight and contained. Pinch seam to seal.
Smear loaf pan with softened butter. Place dough, seam down, in the pan. Cover with plastic wrap and allow to rise for 2 hours.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Mix a little egg with milk, and smear over the top. Bake for 40 minutes on a middle/lower rack in the oven.
Remove from the pan and allow bread to cool.