Saffron Raisin Bread came into making in my kitchen due to the numerous mall visits. When the kids were lil we took them to the mall frequently during the cold season. There are really good play areas for kids, plenty of stores to shop, many restaurants and bakeries. They loved to play there for sometime then get a treat in one of the local bakeries.
There is one bakery that has so many varieties of fresh breads that are sweet and savory but has very few varieties of cake. We always got a cream filled bread and the saffron raisin twisted bread along with other things we got :). These 2 were our favorites and wanted to recreate it at home. Below is the recipe that worked for me.
The saffron raisin bread is very aromatic bread with a mild flavor of the saffron and sweetness from the raisins. I have used golden raisins which are sweet and tangy.
wholewheat flour 2 cups
fine semolina 1 1/2 cups
butter 4 tbsp
saffron 1/4 tsp
milk 1 cup
water 3/4 cup
raisin 1/3 cup
active dry yeast 1 tsp
sugar 3 tbsp
salt 1 tsp
proofing the yeast and soaking saffron
Microwave water for 40 seconds to make it luke warm.
Mix the yeast in warm water, along with 1/2 tbsp sugar.
Keep the mixture inside the oven for 10 mins with the light on.
soak the saffron
Add the saffron into the lukewarm milk and let sit for 10 mins.
making the dough and baking
Mix together the dry ingredients – whole wheat flour, semolina, salt, remaining sugar, and raisins.
Add the butter, milk-saffron mixture and water-yeast mixture little by little to the dry ingredients.
Mix well to form a soft dough.
Knead using hand or kitchen aid stand mixer for 10 minutes.
Cover this with wet cloth and keep the dough aside for 1 hour(note: I keep it inside oven with light turned on for warmth)
After the dough has doubled in size, punch it to remove the trapped air.
Punch it for a few times and knead it again for 10 mins.
Flatten the dough using a rolling pin.
From one edge start to roll the dough to form a log and seal the edges.
Transfer the dough on to a baking tray lined with parchment paper and cover it with plastic wrap or a wet towel.
Let the dough rise in a warm place for another 50 mins.
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
Bake the bread for 35-40 mins.
Let it cool for a 10 mins in the baking tray and then transfer to a wire rack.
Slice the bread once it is completely cooled.
Enjoy it toasted with some butter or as is for breakfast or as a snack.
Note: Active dry yeast could be replaced with the instant/rapid rise yeast. If using instant yeast then you can skip the “proofing the yeast” part and add the yeast directly with the flour and follow rest of the steps.