Baking Bootcamp: Triple Berry Cinnamon Swirl Bread

triple berry swirl bread

Triple Berry Yeasted Cinnamon Swirl Bread // King Arthur Flour + Joy the Baker

I first started Joy the Baker because I wanted partners in baking. Strange really, considering that when I started Joy the Baker I was working as a baker in a rowdy kitchen.  Still, I would find myself coming home in the middle of the afternoon, still looking around for people to bake with.  Maybe I was a little obsessed…

Where do obsessed people go to find friends that understand them?  The Internet… obviously.

(What feels like) ages ago I joined an online baking group called The Daring Bakers.  Every week a different member would bring the group a new and challenging recipe, we’d all make it, post the results and photographs on our respective blogs, and otherwise totally dork out on our accomplishments.

Being part of The Daring Bakers was instrumental in helping me grow my blog audience, helping me make great baking friends online, and helping me realize that I really should never attempt to make a baguette in my home oven ever again… all really important things.

Now, I wanted to bring some of that community spirit back to Joy the Baker! I want us to take on baking challenges, get in the kitchen, and share all the goodness that comes out! We’re partnering with King Arthur Flour on a 4- part baking challenge called BAKING BOOTCAMP!  You guys… this is going to be good! The goal is to learn the differences between the most popular flours we use in the kitchen, and to get in the kitchen (each and every one of us) and take on 4 different baking challenges with new knowledge and confidence under our apron strings!

Triple Berry Yeasted Cinnamon Swirl Bread // King Arthur Flour + Joy the Baker

Four Flours + Four Recipes Challenges + One Instagram #bakingbootcamp

+ Four Awesome Sets of Prizes!

The idea is simple!

•  Make this braided Triple Berry Cinnamon Swirl Bread (it’s sooooo good!) and take a picture of your creation!

•  Follow @joythebaker and @kingarthurflour on Instagram

•  Photograph your beautiful braided bread and post it to Instagram with the hashtag #bakingbootcamp

•  When you submit a photo, you’ll be entered to win a one year supply of King Arthur Flour and a Baking Essentials box valued at $250!!  Official rules and details can be found here.

I’ll be answering questions and sharing your photographs here on Joy the Baker.  By entering the challenge you’ll also have amazing cinnamon swirl bread in your kitchen, so… you really can’t lose.

Let’s get started!

Baking Bootcamp Essentials

Here’s what you’ll need for our Cinnamon Swirl Bread Baking Bootcamp:

1 •  King Arthur All-Purpose Flour  is perfectly soft and reliably sturdy for this braided bread.

2 •  I use this King Arthur Flour Bench Scraper just about everyday in my kitchen.  It’s perfect for scraping little dough bits from the countertop… something a sponge just pitifully attacks.  You might also use the bench scraper as a knife to slice though the center of the rolled dough.  It’s sharp too! I love this tool!

3 • Kitchen fashion is important to me.  Hedley & Bennett understands my needs for a functional, durable, totally chic apron.  Not too frilly.  I always want to be more badass than 50’s housewife-y in the kitchen.  

4 • My Cast Iron Skillet are a staple in my everyday kitchen.  Some are more successfully seasoned than others, but I try to keep some cast iron specifically for savory and other just for sweets.

5 • Having  Colorful Mixing Bowls  is the kitchen equivalent of having a great black dress in your closet.  Necessary treat.  

6 • Powdered Sugar Sifter because dumping it straight from the bag onto our finished bread is way more dramatic and clumpy than we want it to be.

7 • I inherited a Marble Rolling Pin from a family friend and now I don’t know how I’ve gone without one for so long!  This piece has great weigh and can be chilled in the refrigerator prior to rolling to keep our doughs more amiable.

8 • Don’t skimp on Good Silicone Spatulas.  The ones that melt along with the butter are just infuriating.  

9 • Is it normal to have a completely mismatched set of Measuring Cups, or should I just treat myself to a matching set like this?  Don’t answer that…

10 • Same goes for the Measuring Spoons… it’s nice to have a full matching set.

Triple Berry Yeasted Cinnamon Swirl Bread // King Arthur Flour + Joy the Baker

First up in our baking bootcamp:  All-Purpose Flour. All-purpose flour is the flour is have stocked in your pantry at all times.  It’s super versatile!  It can tackle everything from yeasted breads to tender cakes.  The moderate protein levels in the flour makes it ready to handle most every baking task. King Arthur All- Purpose Flour is milled from the heart of the red winter wheatberry.  It has a protein content of 11.7% which is pretty moderate when you consider the higher protein content of whole wheat flour at 14%.  We going to talk about the nitty gritty of flour tomorrow so stay tuned!

Now… let’s bake together!

This bread is a challenge, but that’s the whole idea!  We’re pushing ourselves out of our comfort zone (Even me!  I am too!!) to create a braided loaf that’s completely unique and we’re learning to work this all-purpose flour in the process.

I start by assembling all of my ingredients.  Measuring and setting ingredients before baking helps me ensure that I haven’t forgotten a vital ingredient.

A towel is also helpful, always.

I first measure and lightly stir and toss the all-purpose flour.

Triple Berry Yeasted Cinnamon Swirl Bread // King Arthur Flour + Joy the Baker

I add sugar to the warmed milk.

Triple Berry Yeasted Cinnamon Swirl Bread // King Arthur Flour + Joy the Baker

I add active dry yeast over the warmed milk and sugar.

Triple Berry Yeasted Cinnamon Swirl Bread // King Arthur Flour + Joy the Baker

Time to stir!

Stirring yeast into warm sugar milk will help activate the yeast in two ways.  Yeast is activated by the heat of the milk and eats the sugars added to the milk.  It will bubble and froth over the course of five minutes.

Triple Berry Yeasted Cinnamon Swirl Bread // King Arthur Flour + Joy the Baker

That’s when we stir in the egg yolk…

Triple Berry Yeasted Cinnamon Swirl Bread // King Arthur Flour + Joy the Baker

And the butter.

Triple Berry Yeasted Cinnamon Swirl Bread // King Arthur Flour + Joy the Baker

The yeasted, sweet, buttery milk is poured into the all-purpose flour.

Triple Berry Yeasted Cinnamon Swirl Bread // King Arthur Flour + Joy the Baker

I made this recipe with just a bowl and a wooden spoon just to ensure that this recipe was approachable to all of us… even without a fancy stand mixer.

It totally is!

To start, I mixed the dough with a wooden spoon.  It comes together it a rough ball.  That’s about right!

Triple Berry Yeasted Cinnamon Swirl Bread // King Arthur Flour + Joy the Baker

A good dusting of all-purpose flour for the countertop.

It’s about time to knead!

Triple Berry Yeasted Cinnamon Swirl Bread // King Arthur Flour + Joy the Baker

I start by placing the dough on the floured counter, flipping and rotating it to lightly cover it in flour.

Triple Berry Yeasted Cinnamon Swirl Bread // King Arthur Flour + Joy the Baker

I knead using the heel of my hand to press the dough vertically and forward into a fold.

King Arthur has a really helpful video about how to knead dough by hand.  It’s super approachable!

Triple Berry Yeasted Cinnamon Swirl Bread // King Arthur Flour + Joy the Baker

Sometimes a bit more flour is necessary.

DSC_0395Triple Berry Yeasted Cinnamon Swirl Bread // King Arthur Flour + Joy the Baker

After five minutes of kneading, the dough will be soft and smooth.  It almost has a creamy quality to it.

To test the gluten development in the kneaded dough, I simply press my finger into the formed dough ball.  If the dough springs back, I’m in business!

Triple Berry Yeasted Cinnamon Swirl Bread // King Arthur Flour + Joy the Baker

I lightly grease a large bowl.

Triple Berry Yeasted Cinnamon Swirl Bread // King Arthur Flour + Joy the Baker

Lightly covered in plastic wrap, this is where our dough will rest and rise.

Triple Berry Yeasted Cinnamon Swirl Bread // King Arthur Flour + Joy the Baker

While the dough rests in a warm place (I usually choose next to the oven somewhere), I stirred together softened butter, ground cinnamon, and sugar for the filling.

Stirring the filling together in a small bowl ensure that it will spread onto the dough evenly.

Triple Berry Yeasted Cinnamon Swirl Bread // King Arthur Flour + Joy the Baker

Look at this!

Risen dough!

Triple Berry Yeasted Cinnamon Swirl Bread // King Arthur Flour + Joy the Baker

I gently hold and knead the risen dough on a lightly floured surface.  Just two kneads will do.

Triple Berry Yeasted Cinnamon Swirl Bread // King Arthur Flour + Joy the Baker

A light dusting as we prepare to roll.

Triple Berry Yeasted Cinnamon Swirl Bread // King Arthur Flour + Joy the Baker

And roll!

Triple Berry Yeasted Cinnamon Swirl Bread // King Arthur Flour + Joy the Baker

I’m going for a rectangle shape knowing that yeasted dough has a mind of its own and nothing is perfect.

I’m going for 18×12-inches.

Triple Berry Yeasted Cinnamon Swirl Bread // King Arthur Flour + Joy the Baker

Buttery cinnamon filling is added in dollops across the dough.  Adding the filling in dollops will help in its even spreading.

Also… fingers are often necessary.

Triple Berry Yeasted Cinnamon Swirl Bread // King Arthur Flour + Joy the Baker

I spread the filling as evenly as possible, leaving about 1-inch of clean dough on all sides.

DSC_0587Triple Berry Yeasted Cinnamon Swirl Bread // King Arthur Flour + Joy the Baker

Whole berries are added! I pressed them down just a bit, nothing too dramatic.

Triple Berry Yeasted Cinnamon Swirl Bread // King Arthur Flour + Joy the Baker

Rolling the dough is done with light but deliberate hands.  I start on the left side of the longest side of the dough and gently roll the dough onto itself working from left to right and back again.

Triple Berry Yeasted Cinnamon Swirl Bread // King Arthur Flour + Joy the Baker

The roll is be lumpy and bumpy.  That’s because it’s full of fresh fruit!  Totally normal.

Triple Berry Yeasted Cinnamon Swirl Bread // King Arthur Flour + Joy the Baker

The roll is left seam side down and the ends are gently tucked under.

Triple Berry Yeasted Cinnamon Swirl Bread // King Arthur Flour + Joy the Baker

Ok.  Here’s where things start to get a little crazy.

I slice the rolled dough in half lengthwise, leaving about 1-inch of dough attached (un-cut) at the top.

Triple Berry Yeasted Cinnamon Swirl Bread // King Arthur Flour + Joy the Baker

The doughy halves are then flipped upward.

Hang in there! This feels crazy, but it’s totally possible.

Triple Berry Yeasted Cinnamon Swirl Bread // King Arthur Flour + Joy the Baker

I carefully grab the left strand of dough and lift it over the right strand.

Triple Berry Yeasted Cinnamon Swirl Bread // King Arthur Flour + Joy the Baker

I take the left strand once again and gently lift it over the right strand.    It’s normal to need to re-orient the entire strand to make sure it stays evenly twisted in the center of the table.  The key is not to be afraid of the dough.

Triple Berry Yeasted Cinnamon Swirl Bread // King Arthur Flour + Joy the Baker

On and on creating a twist.

Triple Berry Yeasted Cinnamon Swirl Bread // King Arthur Flour + Joy the Baker

The braid is twisted arched into a circle and the two ends are pressed together.

Triple Berry Yeasted Cinnamon Swirl Bread // King Arthur Flour + Joy the Baker

I greased a 9-inch skillet.

This particular skillet has tall 3-inch sides.  Don’t worry.  That’s not entirely necessary.  A traditional cast iron skillet will also work well.

If you don’t have a cast iron skillet, a 10-inch spring form pan will also work well. I always wrap the outside bottom of my spring form pans with foil just to prevent and sneaky leaks.

A 10-inch cake pan with 3-inch sides will also work.  Just be sure to grease the cake pan well.  Run a knife along the edges of the pan before inverting and removing the bread from the pan.

Triple Berry Yeasted Cinnamon Swirl Bread // King Arthur Flour + Joy the Baker

One deep breath and I gently lifted the dough into the greased skillet.

The fact that I have huge hands helps.  There’s no hesitation in this move.  The dough will smell my fear.  I just go for it.

Triple Berry Yeasted Cinnamon Swirl Bread // King Arthur Flour + Joy the Baker

One large egg, beaten…

Triple Berry Yeasted Cinnamon Swirl Bread // King Arthur Flour + Joy the BakerDSC_0817

And lightly brushed on the the doughy edges of the unbaked loaf.

Off to the oven!

Triple Berry Yeasted Cinnamon Swirl Bread // King Arthur Flour + Joy the Baker

About 25 minutes later the loaf is golden brown and sizzling with berries and cinnamon sugar.  It’s all very good news!

Triple Berry Yeasted Cinnamon Swirl Bread // King Arthur Flour + Joy the Baker

Because our dough was gently kneaded with all-purpose flour, eggs, and butter, the bread is wonderfully tender and rich.  The sweet berries compliment the fragrant cinnamon creating a perfectly decadent breakfast treat.  Also… I just braided bread so I basically feel like a superhero.

Triple Berry Yeasted Cinnamon Swirl Bread // King Arthur Flour + Joy the Baker

photographs by: Jon Melendez

Now it’s your turn!  Take on the challenge!

Share your beautiful braided bread with us on Instagram #bakingbootcamp.

You have until June 22nd to submit your photos to be entered to win a one year supply of King Arthur Flour and a Baking Essentials Box valued at $250.  Official rules and details here.

Leave any questions about the recipe in the comments below and check back here for all of your baking photos!

Triple Berry Cinnamon Swirl Bread makes 1 loaf

Print this Recipe!

For the Dough: 2 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast 1 tablespoon granulated sugar 3/4 cup whole milk, warmed to a warm lukewarm 1 large egg yolk 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted 2 1/4 cups King Arthur All-Purpose Flour 1/2 teaspoon salt a bit of olive oil for greasing the bowl For the Filling: 1/4 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature 1/4 cup granulated sugar 3 teaspoons ground cinnamon 2 cups fresh berries (sliced fresh strawberries, fresh raspberries, fresh blueberries) 1 large egg, beaten for egg wash In a medium bowl stir yeast with sugar. Stir in  the lukewarm milk and then add the egg yolk and melted butter.  Whisk together until thoroughly combined.  Allow mixture to rest for 5 minutes.  It should foam and froth. In a large bowl whisk together the flour and salt. Pour the milk mixture over the dry ingredients and start kneading it until it pulls away from the edges of the bowl. Place dough on a lightly floured counter and knead by hand for about 10 minutes more.  Dough ball should be smooth and damp, without being too sticky.  Shape dough into a ball. Grease a large bowl with olive oil.  Place the dough in the bowl and cover.  Allow to rest at warm room temperature for about 1 hours, or until doubled in size. While the dough rises, whisk together the butter with sugar and cinnamon for the filling. Set aside. Preheat the oven to 375degrees F. Grease a 10-inch cast iron skillet.  Set aside. After the dough has doubled in size, place it on a lightly floured counter and knead twice.  Using a rolling pin to roll the dough to a rectangle of about 18×12 inches. Spoon the cinnamon filling over top, spreading evenly, leaving a clean 1-inch border around the edges. Sprinkle the fresh berries over the cinnamon filling. Start by rolling the longest side of the dough.  The roll will be a bit lumpy because of all the berries. Using a sharp knife, cut the log in half length-wise leaving 1-inch of the edge uncut. Start braiding the two pieces, by carefully lifting the left strand over the right strand.  Repeat this motion until you reach the bottom of the dough.  Press together to seal.  Join the two ends, creating a circle with the dough and press together. Using two swift hands, transfer the dough ring to the prepared cast iron skillet. Brush the wreath with the beaten egg. Bake for 20-25 minutes until golden brown and bubbling.  Allow to cool for about 30 minutes before slicing and serving.  

176 thoughts on “Baking Bootcamp: Triple Berry Cinnamon Swirl Bread

  1. Thanks so much for all the step by step pictures!!! They really help. Im going to try this this weekend! Love your blog so much!!

  2. Hello Joy,
    I have one question concerning the cast iron skillet. I don’t have one. Can I also take a normal spring form for that? Thanks for the reply.
    Greets, Anja

    1. you can use either a 10-inch springform pan or a 10-inch round cake pan with 3-inch sides, just grease both well. (and i like to wrap the bottom outside of my springform pan with foil.)

      1. That was my question too! I don’t own a cast iron skillet but I DO have a springform, yay! Joy you just answered my question of how I am going to spend my morning, baking this beautiful bread! Too bad I don’t have Instagram :(

  3. I am so delighted to see you’re making this, Joy, because I am in the middle of baking a chocolate version from Yotam Ottolenghi’s book ‘Jerusalem’. Your fruit version look equally delicious!

  4. I can never resist an enriched dough (I blame my central European origins) and this looks so good! Perfect for the weekend.

  5. King Arthur is the best, period. Hands down, best. Love this bread and the amazing step shots. The pic of vertically slicing the log, now that’s where it would have been like, whoa, a little bit like am I really doing this? LOL But clearly it all worked out. Beautiful bread and pinned!

  6. I can’t wait to make this and enter the challenge! This looks positively amazing! The braiding technique is beautiful :)

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