Farm House Rhubarb Bread
Rhubarb is the only crop I can seem to grow – or more properly phrased, the only crop I do not seem to kill. Most rhubarb breads are quick breads, but this one, oozes tart/sweet rhubarb in lightly sweet, yeasted dough. It is perfect fresh, or days later, makes super French toast or doubles as a coffee klatch treat. Makes two breads, one to freeze or one to give away.
- 1 1/2 cups warm water
- 2 tablespoons instant yeast
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted
- 2 teaspoons vanilla
- 2 eggs
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 5 to 6 cups bread flour
- 4 to 5 cups diced fresh rhubarb
- 1 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- zest of one orange, finely minced
- 3/4 cup sugar
- Finishing Touches
- Egg wash
- Granulated or coarse sugar
Generously spray two 8 by 4 inch or 9 by 5 inch loaf pans or two 9 inch layer cake pans with non-stick cooking spray and line the bottoms with a piece of parchment paper, cut to fit. Place pans on a parchment lined baking sheet.
In a mixer bowl, whisk together water and yeast. Add eggs, vanilla, melted butter, cinnamon, salt, sugar and most of flour. Mix, then knead, adding in more flour as required to make smooth, elastic dough, about 8-10 minutes. Remove the dough hook, spray the dough with nonstick cooking spray and cover entire mixer, bowl and all, with a large plastic bag. Let rise about 40 minutes.
Gently deflate and cover. Let rest 20 minutes. Meanwhile, rhubarb by tossing with sugar, orange zest and cinnamon.
Divide dough in two and flatten each into two ovals. Divide fruit into two portions.
On each oval of dough, press in half of the fruit. Fold dough from four corners (more or less) to cover fruit. Press, then flatten with a rolling pin and distribute remaining bits or rhubarb over this. It will be messy and rhubarb will pop out but persist. Roll dough into an oblong shape for loaf pans, or shape into a round if using layer cake pans.
Place on the baking sheet.
Make a few slits or snips with a knife of scissors on the top surface of the loaves.
Cover entire baking sheet in plastic bag and let rise until puffy (30-50 minutes). Preheat oven to 350 F.
Brush each loaf with egg wash and dust with sugar (granulated or coarse) and cinnamon.
Bake until well browned - 35-45 minutes.
Makes two medium breads