Sourdough Cinnamon Raisin Beer Bread
Even though I’ve never really liked raisins, I’ve always loved cinnamon raisin bread toasted to perfection then slathered with butter, melting into the nooks and crannys. But I wondered, what would it be like if I made it with sourdough starter? Even better, what would happen if I replaced some of the water with beer? Well, I did both and the result is not only bread that tastes like a cinnamon roll, but with the subtlety of the sourness from the sourdough and the hoppiness of the beer.
The recipe is the same as any sourdough bread. The only difference is I replace some of the water with beer. I use part of the beer to rehydrate the raisins and the rest goes into the dough. Plus I dust the final dough before I form into the loaves with cinnamon and sugar. That's it, and Viola!
1 - 12 oz bottle decent beer (I used either Lagunitas IPA or Deschuttes Black Butte Porter) divided
80g raisins720g King Arthur Unbleached All Purpose Flour
200g filtered Water
150g 100% starter (50g starter-50g water-50g flour)
14g sea salt
2-4 Tbsp Cinnamon
2-4 Tbsp granulated sugar
Cornmeal to dust bottom of dutch oven
Autolyze the main dough of Flour/Water/Beer
In an 8 cup bowl, place
200g filtered water
600g All Purpose Flour
Stir to combine until the liquid has absorbed all the flour and no flour remains on the bottom or sides of the bowl. Set aside to autolyze/rest for 8 hours or overnight.
Rehydrate the raisins and set aside.
In a tall glass, place:
156g (remaining) beer
Awaken the starter – in a 2 cup bowl:
50g filtered water
Whisk well, cover and leave on counter to awaken
Then, after 8-12 hours, refresh again:
toss all but 50g of starter, add 50g water and 50g flour, whisk well, cover and set aside for 1 more hour
After the second starter refresh is completed, drain beer from raisins into a cup, saving beer (you should have about 120g), add 120g flour to the remaining beer, whisk together.
Add the beer/flour mixture and the refreshed starter into large bowl of the main dough (autolyzed flour water beer), along with raisins and salt. Hand mix to combine well (if you wet your hand frequently, the dough won’t stick as easily).
Every 20-30 minutes, wet your mixing hand and do the Ken Forkish stretch and fold and rotate 5-8 times, until dough starts to come together. Cover with greased plastic wrap to keep surface moist after each stretch and fold.
After 2 hours and the last stretch and fold, cover and place in refrigerator overnight.
The next day, remove dough from refrigerator and allow to warm up for about 1 hour.
Remove from bowl by lighting dusting all around edge, pulling the dough gently away from bowl so flour falls to the bottom of bowl.
Gently pour dough onto a lightly floured surface. You are trying to preserve the bubbles and not tear the dough.
Divide into 1/3rd and 2/3rds (I do a 1lb loaf and a 2lb loaf).
Once again, using the Ken Forkish method, on a lightly floured surface, lightly stretch out each dough into a small rectangle, again, trying to preserve any formed bubbles (no rolling pins please).
Dust each surface liberally with cinnamon and sugar (I cover each surface amply).
Do the envelope fold over on top of the dusted cinnamon and sugar side, rotating the dough 1/8 turn for each fold over.
Once the cinnamon and sugar have been completely covered by the fold-overs, seal the seam side, roll over and gently roll into a ball. You are trying to have the cinnamon and sugar on the interior of each loaf.
Set in a lightly greased bowl, seam side down, covered lightly with a greased plastic wrap.
Do the same with the other piece of dough.
Allow to rise for 1-3 hours, until bubbles form throughout the dough. Do not over-proof.
During the last ½ hour of the rise, place 2 dutch ovens (2lb and 1lb) with lids in a 475F oven.
Once oven comes to temperature, open oven door, remove lids to side of inside of oven.
Put about 1-2 Tablespoons of corn meal on the bottom of each dutch oven.
Add the dough (large in large, small in small). Slash the tops.
Cover with lids (I have foil around my lid to form a tighter seal).
Reduce oven temperature to 425F. Bake covered for 30-40 minutes (check at 30, if not brown yet, go another 10 minutes).
After 40 minutes, remove both loaves from dutch ovens and place back on the rack to finish cooking until the internal temperature is between 205F and 210F degrees (another 10-15 minutes). The small loaf may be done after 40 minutes. Just keep checking the temperature.
Remove from oven onto a cooling rack. Allow to cool before slicing (if you can wait).
Serve warm or toasted with melted butter, or jam, or with broiled muenster cheese on top.
I use All Purpose Flour in this recipe as it delivers a softer, moister crumb. I am not looking for a “hearty” loaf, hence no whole wheat flour. Feel free to experiment however and keep me posted.