The days of summer have begun and I'm not quite ready to give up baking bread just yet.
Granted, I made this a couple of weeks ago when the weather was in the perfect low-70's—both moody and overcast from what I feel like was the last rainfall for a while.
My original intent was to make monkey bread but that took a lot more time and effort than I had in the day so it became a messy jumble loaf instead.
This is inspired by a recipe for a Cinnamon Raisin Jumble Loaf in The Great British Bake Off Big Book of Baking. Raisins and I are generally not friends unless in the rare occasion when they're baked in focaccia.
So, chocolate was an obvious addition.
I wouldn't say that beauty is the goal of this bread. If it was, then I'd just do a cinnamon loaf or plain cinnamon rolls. It's easier than regular cinnamon bread or monkey bread in that perfection is not key.
To assemble, make a regular cinnamon roll log, cut it into individual circles and then semi-circles. Then, toss it into a loaf pan with some chocolate chips and that's all the assembly that's required.
Once baked, the the dough expands into a gooey-caramel-chocolate fluffy loaf of bread. It's one of those things that you set on the table for people to pick apart. It's conversation food and best fresh out of the oven.
Now, I'm dreaming of more bread and pie and wading out this 100ºF week with It's Its.
Cinnamon Chocolate Jumble Loaf
Yields: Two 8½ x 4½ x2½ loaves
2¼ teaspoons active dry yeast
¼ cup warm water
1 teaspoon sugar
1 cup warm milk
½ cup melted butter
⅓ cup sugar
1 teaspoon salt
3 eggs, lightly beaten
6 to 7 cups flour
4 tablespoons melted butter
2 teaspoons cinnamon
½ teaspoon nutmeg
½ cup brown sugar
4 tablespoons white sugar
1 cup chocolate chips
Stir the 1 teaspoon of sugar in the warm water. Sprinkle the yeast over the warm water; stir with a fork until dissolved. Set aside to double, about 10 minutes.
In a large mixing bowl, blend in the warm milk, butter, sugar, salt and eggs. Add in the yeast mixture. Beat in 3 cups of flour until the mixture is smooth. Gradually add sufficient flour to make a soft, workable dough. Turn out on a floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic, about 10 minutes. Form into a ball, place in a warm, greased bowl, turning to coat the top. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and a towel. Let rise until doubled, about 1½ hours.
Punch down the dough. Turn it out on a lightly floured board and knead lightly. Cover and let rest for 10-15 minutes. In the meantime, mix the cinnamon, nutmeg, brown and white sugar in a bowl.
Cut the dough in half and roll one half into a 10" x 16" rectangle. Brush with butter and sprinkle half of the cinnamon sugar filling across the dough in an even layer. Starting on the long side, roll into a log. Pinch to seal the top. With a sharp knife, cut the log into 16 1-inch pieces. Cut these pieces in semi circles and toss in a loaf pan, alternating with ½ cup chocolate chips to create layers of chocolate and dough. Repeat with the rest of the dough, cinnamon sugar filling and chocolate.
Cover and let rise until doubled, about 30 minutes. Adjust your oven rack so that the bread is positioned in the middle of the oven. Bake in a preheated 375ºF oven for 45 minutes. Cover the top with foil if it gets too dark in the middle of baking. Remove from the oven and cool in pan for 10 minutes. Turn out on a cooling rack.