A healthy whole wheat bread dotted with plump raisins and scented with cinnamon.
500gwhole wheat flour
150gAP flour + a little extra for dusting while kneading
2 ½tspactive dry yeast
3 ½tspcinnamon powder
Soak the raisins in a bowl of warm water for about 20-30 minutes before you begin. Then drain and set aside.
Heat about 50 ml of the measured water till barely lukewarm and dissolve the yeast in it. Cover and keep aside for 5-10 minutes till the yeast is foamy. If there’s no change, maybe your water was too hot; so start again with a fresh batch.
Put the flours, muesli and salt in a large bowl and stir a few times with a wooden spoon to incorporate some air in the mixture.
Make a well in the centre of the flour and pour in the yeast, milk, honey, water and oil. Mix with a wooden spoon till you get a rough, wet mass. Cover the bowl with a damp tea towel and leave the dough to hydrate for 20 minutes.
After 20 minutes, sprinkle the dough with powdered cinnamon and raisins, and knead well for 5-7 minutes on a lightly floured surface till the raisins are well incorporated and the dough appears smooth (no.1 in the collage). Now put the dough in an oiled bowl, cover with cling film and rest in a warm place for 1 hour till it has doubled in volume.
Put the dough once again on a floured surface and without using too much pressure, gently fold the dough in thirds (the left and right sides) as shown in the picture (no.2). Turn it over and fold the top and bottom sides too in a similar fashion (no.3).
Put it back in the oiled bowl, cover and let it proof for a further hour till doubled.
After an hour, cut the dough into 2 pieces, gently using the tips of your fingers flatten it ever so slightly and fold into thirds, tuck in the the short ends and place into lightly greased/sprayed loaf pans (no. 4 in the collage). Cover both pans with cling and leave in a warm place for 90 minutes for the final rise.
Preheat your oven to 230°C about 45 minutes before you start baking.
Once the dough has risen to an inch above the rim of the pan, spray the tops with water and place in the centre of the hot oven. After 5 minutes of baking, turn the temperature down to 190° C and bake for 35-40 minutes (turning the pans by 180°after the 20 minutes for even cooking) till the loaves are nicely browned and the bottom of the pans produces a hollow sound.
Turn the bread out on racks to cool completely before storing in a ziplock bag to prevent it from drying out and going stale.
Prep time does not include 20 minutes for soaking raisins.
Adapted from Jeffrey Hamelman’s Bread