Is there anything more beautiful than a swirled loaf? I don't think so either. Let me just tell you, this Cranberry Orange Swirled Brioche Loaf is the loaf you need for late fall/winter.
Why Make This Swirl Bread?
Do we even need to answer this question? Yes, it is a little more time-consuming, but let me tell you, it is well worth every minute!
If you have never tried making brioche, let this be the recipe. I will break down and teach you just how simple it is to make this tender, delicious bread.
Cranberry orange are the ultimate fall/winter flavor combo. They are so good in this bread. I use my favorite Cranberry Orange sauce that was leftover to make this recipe.
You will feel proud serving this beautiful loaf to your family and friends! The swirl is just so pretty. People are always so impressed!
- Milk- As a rich dough, milk is part of it.
- Yeast- I used instant yeast, but you can also use active dry if you prefer.
- Salt- it is just a touch.
- Brown Sugar- You could also use granulated sugar if you prefer.
- Eggs- Again, it is a rich dough, so eggs are a must.
- All-purpose flour- I use a blend of whole wheat and all-purpose. The texture and flave are so good together!
- Whole Wheat Flour- I used a kmaut flour in this one, but you can also use white whole wheat, rye, spelt, etc.
- Butter- It would not be a brioche without a lot of butter!
- Granulated Sugar- I make an orange sugar that gets sprinkled on this dough, granulated sugar is a must.
- Cranberry Sauce- I have an awesome cranberry orange sauce recipe. This bread is made from the leftovers!
- Orange- The zest will be used in the orange sugar, and the juice in the glaze.
- Powdered Sugar- This is used for the glaze
How To Make Brioche
Start by adding your warm milk (you can heat it in a small saucepan or microwave. It is only heated to about 100 degrees), yeast, salt, eggs, brown sugar, and flours to the bowl of a stand mixer.
It is not recommended to mix brioche by hand. Not only do you have to knead for a really long time, but your hands will warm the dough too much. Use the dough hook for this recipe
Mix for about 1 minute. Then you will start adding the butter in 1 tablespoon increments. Butter is added slowly to the dough in making brioche. In fact, the process of adding the butter should take about 10-15 minutes.
So add a tablespoon, let it mix in, then add another. do not rush this process. At the end of the mixing time, you should have a very smooth dough.
The dough might feel too sticky to you, don't worry, after the chill, it will be so much easier to work with!
Once the butter is all added and mixed in, it is time to chill. Now, transfer dough in a ziplock bag sprayed with pan release, or you can turn dough into a greased bowl and cover it with a piece of plastic wrap. Make sure and give it room to rise. It will double.
Forming The Brioche Loaf
It is time to form the loaf! Remove from the fridge. Lightly flour your surface and roll it into a rectangle.
Spread the rectangle with your cranberry sauce, then sprinkle with the orange sugar. Roll up the loaf just as you would a cinnamon roll. Pinch the ends to keep the loaf closed.
Cut a slit right down the middle, lengthwise. This is going to be messy, so don't freak out. Twist the 2 sides around each other to form the swirl.
Place it in your prepared 9x5 loaf pan. Cover and let the loaf double. Brush with egg wash and bake until the loaf reaches an internal temp of 190 degrees. I always prefer to go by temp on bread like this rather than temp or color.
Remove it from the oven and let it sit for about 5 minutes in the pan. Once it has cooled for a few minutes, carefully remove it from the pan.
When you are ready, glaze it with the orange glaze.
It is really important to chill your dough before trying to work with it. It is too soft to work with when you first make it. The next day is so much easier to work with the next day!
This is going to be a pretty messy to work with. Don't stress, but just know when you are rolling it will get a little much.
The best way to check to see if this bread is done is by checking the temperature. With a bread like this it is really hard to judge doneness by color or even time in the oven. The 190 temp is the best way to tell.
You sure don't. I love it, but don't always put it on.
You can leave the orange sugar out if you want. I like to cranberry orange combo, but that is up to you!
I am not sure, so I cannot give a solid answer on this one.
Other Brioche Breads
Cranberry Orange Swirl Loaf
- ½ cup warm milk
- 2 ½ teaspoons active dry yeast
- 3 eggs
- 1 teaspoons salt
- ¼ cup brown sugar
- 1 ¾ cups all-purpose flour
- 1 ¾ cup all-purpose flour
- ½ cup softened butter
- 1 cup cranberry orange sauce
- ⅓ cup granulated sugar
- 2 tablespoons orange zest
- 1 egg
- 2 tablespoons milk
- Read through all instructions before starting.
- Add all ingredients for the dough into your stand mixer with the dough hook attachment. Make sure and start with 1 ¾ cups all-purpose flour. You can add more later if needed.
- Mix for about a minute. Then start adding the softened ½ cup butter in a tablespoon at a time. This will take a while to mix all the way, so don't rush the process. It should take 10-15 minutes all together.
- Once all the butter is added and it is mixed well, it is time to chill.
- I like to store mine in a sprayed ziplock bag. If you do it this way, make sure not to take all the air out of the bag, give it room to rise. If you don't want to use bags, you can grease a large bowl and place the dough in it. Cover tightly with saran wrap.
- I like to let this have a cool rise for at least 12 hours.
- On baking day, combine the granulated sugar and orange zest to make the orange sugar. Set this aside. Then spray your pan with pan release or brush with melted or softened butter.
- When you are ready, remove the dough from the fridge. On a lightly floured surface roll the dough to 16x20 inches.
- Spread the cranberry sauce over the rectangle, leaving about 1 inch at the bottom to pinch to close the loaf.
- Then sprinkle the orange sugar over the cranberry sauce. Roll just like you would a cinnamon roll. Pinch the ends closed. Sorry, the video will probably do a better job of describing this.
- Then, slit down the middle lengthwise. Twist the 2 sides over each other to form the swirl. Tucking both ends under, then placing it in the loaf pan.
- Cover and let this rise until it is doubled. It will depend on the temp in your house as to how long this will take. Mine took a little over an hour.
- At the end of the rising time, preheat your oven to 350 degrees. When the loaf is doubled, place it in the preheated oven.
- I like to cover my loaf with a tinfoil tent after about 40 minutes so it doesn't get too dark. I also like to check for doneness with a thermometer. I have found this the best way to know when the bread is perfectly baked.
- Bake the brioche to 190 degrees. Once it is up to temperature, remove it from the oven and allow it to cool for just a few minutes in the pan.
- Slide a knife around the edges, then carefully invert to remove the loaf. You can eat it right away while it is hot, but I really like to let it cool just slightly.
- This bread is delicious like it is, slathered in butter, or even toasted and buttered. Yum!
- Now, sit back and enjoy. You deserve it!