The smell of yeast filled the air. It was released when a warm liquid awakened it after a long, dry rest. The aroma was enhanced with an earthy note. Spices mixed in and intertwined with newly forming dough. Cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and cardamom gave warmth to an ordinary bread. The heat of the oven gave one final spring rise and soon after Spiced Buns were ready for breakfast.
Spices add so much more than flavor. They ignite hunger with their scent. They alter the color with varying hues from all points on the spectrum. They are the theme for November’s Twelve Loaves Challenge. It’s one I’ve been looking forward to for a long time. The real challenge was deciding on which bread to bake. I finally went with a bun filled with four of my favorite spices along with another fave of mine, dried currants.
Spiced buns could be considered a yeast biscuit. However, it is very different from any standard biscuit found here in the south. Southern biscuits are quick breads made with flour, leavening, fat, and liquid. I use self-rising flour, shortening, and milk when I make biscuits. So to me, Spiced Buns are more like a roll. They have a distinct bread texture and a moderate level of spice. Serve them warm along with butter and jam.
What is your favorite spice? Do you bake bread with it? You should because it’s fun and tasty too! If you need recipes or inspiration, here is a list for you to get started:
- Cinnamon-Cardamom Buns by Heather at girlichef
- Cinnamon Crusted Pumpkin Bread by Liz at That Skinny Chick Can Bake
- Cinnamon Doughnut Muffins by Dorothy at Shockingly Delicious
- Cinnamon, Orange and Chocolate Chip Bread by Deepti at Bakingyummies
- Cinnamon Swirl Pumpkin Rolls by Karen at Karen’s Kitchen Stories
- Cocoa Clove Pumpkin Bread by Renee at Kudos Kitchen by Renee
- Ginger Pull-Apart Bread by Lora at Cake Duchess
- Honey Spice Bread by Holly at A Baker’s House
- Persimmon Gingerbread Muffins with Caramel Drizzle by Krista at A Handful of Everything
- Pumpkin Cardamom Bread by Dionne at Try Anything Once Culinary
- Spiced Buns by Renee at Magnolia Days
- Sumac Spicy Crackers by Rossella at Ma che ti sei mangiato
- Sweet Potato Spice Swirl Bread by Paula at Vintage Kitchen Notes
- 3½ to 4 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 packages (1/4 ounce each) active dry yeast
- ⅓ cup sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
- ⅛ teaspoon ground cardamom
- ⅔ cup water
- ½ cup butter, at room temperature
- 3 eggs, at room temperature
- 1 cup dried currants or raisins
- 1 egg white, slightly beaten
- Grease a large bowl and set aside. Grease 2 baking sheets or line them with parchment or non-stick liners.
- Whisk together 2 cups flour, yeast, sugar, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and cardamom in the bowl of a stand mixer.
- Heat water and butter in a small saucepan until warm, 120-130 degrees F (butter does not need to melt). Add to flour mixture.
- Lightly beat eggs and add to flour mixture.
- Blend at low speed using the flat beater until moistened.
- Change flat beater to dough hook and turn mixer to recommended setting for the dough hook.
- Gradually add currants and enough flour to make a soft dough (it should "clean" the side of the bowl). Knead with mixer/dough hook for 5 minutes.
- Transfer dough to a lightly floured surface and hand knead a few times.
- Place dough in greased bowl, turning to grease top. Cover and let rise in a warm place until double, about 1 hour.
- Punch dough down and transfer to a lightly floured surface. Roll dough to ½-inch thickness.
- Cut out buns with a 2- to 2½-inch round cutter.
- Place cut-out rounds 1½-inches apart on baking sheets. Cover and let rise in a warm place until double, about 30 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees while buns are on the second rise.
- Gently brush tops with egg white. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes or until golden brown.
- Remove buns from cookie sheets. Serve warm.
Recipe adapted from one in The Red Star Centennial Bread Sampler cookbook (no longer in print).
#TwelveLoaves November – Spices. October #TwelveLoaves was about baking with Root Vegetables. It was quite a delicious month! Temperatures are dropping and it is the right moment to explore bread and SPICE! Share your November Spice Bread (yeast or quick bread). Let’s get baking!
Want to add your bread to the collection with the Linky tool this month? Here’s what you need to do!
- When you post your Twelve Loaves bread on your blog, make sure that you mention the Twelve Loaves challenge in your blog post; this helps us to get more members as well as share everyone’s posts. Please make sure that your bread is inspired by the theme!
- Please link your post to the linky tool at the bottom of my blog. It must be bread baked to the Twelve Loaves theme.
- Have your Twelve Loaves bread that you baked this November, 2013, and posted on your blog by November 30, 2013.
#TwelveLoaves is a monthly bread baking party. It was created by Lora from Cake Duchess and runs so smoothly thanks to the help of the lovely Paula from Vintage Kitchen Notes and Renee from Magnolia Days.