Orange Sourdough Bread with Cranberries, Pecans and Golden Raisins

Baking another sourdough loaf before I put my starter back into hibernation.  This is another one I can’t eat, so I will be gifting it to either Oceanside Animal Hospital or the staff at Bay Avenue Gallery in Ocean Park.

Last time I went to Trader Joe’s in Olympia, Washington, they had orange flavored dried cranberries, and I immediately thought of this recipe.  I really can’t wait to find out how this tastes.

I started putting 1/2 cup active sourdough starter into the bread machine pan.  I then added 3/4 cup orange juice, 2 tablespoons butter, cut into pieces, 1 teaspoon salt, 3 1/4 cups bread flour, 3 tablespoons sugar, and 1 3/4 teaspoons SAF yeast.  I set the Basic and medium cycles for my machine.  After the machine beeped between kneads 1 and 2, I added 1/2 cup dried cranberries, 1/3 cup golden raisins and 1/3 cup chopped pecans.  The dough looked a little dry, so I added a few more drops of orange juice.

The author does note in this recipe that you can add the fruit and nuts at the beginning if you don’t wish to wait.

As this is another sourdough, I have set myself an alarm to check the rise before baking begins.This one required another 90 minutes of rise time before I was comfortable enough to start baking it.

  
The loaf baked up to a lovely golden brown, studded with fruit and nuts. It smells great too; the orange scent is quite strong.

I stopped by today to pick up my plate and the comment sheet, but they couldn’t find the sheet. Not a problem, of course, the receptionist told me everyone loved it, especially the cranberry/raisin combo. I’m going to call this one a win. After all, 100% of the polled respondents (all 1 of them) told me how great it was.

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Cinnamon-Apple-Pecan Bread, page 446, July 27, 2015

Onward and upward.  One more loaf before I head out in the morning, then I will bake a couple when I get to my mom’s.  This one is touted by the author as “the ultimate breakfast bread.”  From the ingredients, it sure sounds like that will be an apt description.

Ingredients for this loaf go into my bread machine in the following order:  1 1/8 cups buttermilk, 2 tablespoons walnut oil, 1 1/4 teaspoons salt, 3 cups bread flour, 3 tablespoons light brown sugar, 1 tablespoon cinnamon (yeah, a whole tablespoon,) 1 tablespoon gluten and 2 teaspoons SAF yeast.  I have set the machine for a medium crust and the basic bread cycle.

While that gets going, I chop up 1/2 cup dried apples and 1/3 cup pecans.  They will be added when the machine signals between Kneads 1 and 2.

As I check the dough after the first mix, it seems really dry. I will add more buttermilk, a little at a time, until the consistency looks right.  I am concerned that the first knead won’t be enough to blend the buttermilk in completely.  Please don’t let me end my night with another brick.

It was looking really ugly, so before adding the apples and pecans, I tossed the dough and started over.  This time, I added 1 more tablespoon of buttermilk during the mixing phase and it already looks better.

IMG_4373

This loaf didn’t rise terribly high, but that is what I am expecting from the sweeter loaves anymore.  Still it looks significantly better than the Greek Currant Bread I did earlier today.  It smells really lovely, too.  The scent of apples and cinnamon is always a delight.

My cousin-in-law(?), Brian, comments on a lot of my bread recipes, so I sent him half a loaf of this.  Here’s what he had to say:

” Thank you Paula for the wonderful bread! Love it! Ate half but going to toast the rest cuz I am all about that toast. Much thanks.”

Granola Bread, page 459, June 14, 2015

I ended up staying home this weekend and as I am finally feeling able to get around, I though it was time to bake another loaf for gifting.  I will be taking this Granola Bread (along with a jar of the Caramel Apple Jam I made last year) to the Oceanside Animal Clinic in Seaview.  They have been so supportive, and I know they truly care about my fur-babies. I have to go in to the office on Monday and will take them some bread as a thank you for being so great.

Granola is another one of those great things that I can’t eat.  Luckily, I was able to find some in the bulk bins at the grocery store, so I only had to buy the amount I needed for this recipe.

Ingredients for this loaf are:  1 1/8 cups buttermilk, 2 tablespoons vegetable oil, 2 tablespoons honey, 1 1/2 teaspoons salt, 2 1/8 cup bread flour, 1 1/4 cups granola (the granola I bought contains cranberries, coconut, raisins, almonds, walnuts and pecans), 3/4 cup whole wheat flour, 1 tablespoon gluten, 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon and 2 teaspoons SAF yeast. I am using the Medium and Basic settings on my machine for this loaf.

FullSizeRenderThis loaf rose up nicely and has a wonderful cinnamon scent.  I decided to slice this up and deliver it on a plate.  As you can see, bits of nuts and dried fruit are visible throughout the loaf.  The texture is soft, but the bread is on the heavy side.  I will ask them to give me their thoughts.

They were so great, they even washed the plate for me when they were done; that wasn’t necessary.  They did let me know they are willing to act as guinea pigs again whenever I need them too.

“Like the nuts!”

“Very good”

“Good”

“Yumm yumm! Love it!”

” Good – A little dry. Thank you!”

“Yummy”

“Good!”

Thanks again, to the staff at Oceanside Animal Clinic.  You all have been so wonderful, and continue to be.