Thursday, January 7, 2010

Oatmeal Raisin Bread & Whipped Cream Cake

Often when I'm flipping through bread books I'll come across recipes that I would like to bake, but then as I scan down the list of ingredients, buttermilk powder is listed as an ingredient. I have a mental list of items at the back of my mind which I'm always on the lookout for when I'm shopping and buttermilk powder has been there for a while. I know you can get this item, otherwise it wouldn't be listed, but when I've shopped at my local supermarket or any other supermarket within a five mile radius I can never find it. Well my luck finally changed when I was shopping at the bulk food store recently. I know I had checked for it here many times before, never to be found, but I persisted and as I looked over each bin, this time, there it was near the skim milk powder which, by the way, you can find everywhere. Not only did they have buttermilk powder, there in a bin nearby I finally spotted dry milk. I came close many times to ordering dry milk from King Arthur but shipping to Canada was more than double the cost of the item so I resisted. Dry milk differs from milk powder in that dry milk does not dissolve in water, and is used in bread recipes and eliminates the scalding milk step. I had no idea what recipes I would be baking with either of these ingredients, but I scooped a bit of both into small plastic bags and came hope quite satisfied, having hit two birds with one stone.

I went through my bread machine baking book where I had seen the buttermilk listed in many of the recipes and came across Oatmeal Raisin Bread. I love raisin bread and this one had oatmeal in it, how bad could that be I thought, well not bad at all, so I eagerly assembled all the ingredients into the pan as described and set my machine to work. How easy is that! This time to keep things simpler I didn't bother to convert the recipe to the sponge method, I could always do that next time. This recipe is loaded with raisins which I like. Often bread machine recipes skimp out the amount of raisins added to the dough and I will normally increase the amount to my liking but I didn't have to this time because this recipe is loaded with raisins.

The dough was nice to work with and before I knew it, it was time to shape the dough into loaves, allow to rise and bake. About a half an hour later the house smelled divine and the bread was done. The bread was quite good, certainly better than any bread you find in your grocery store bakery department. I'm sure the buttermilk improved the flavour from a loaf made with skim milk powder but I didn't have one to compare it to so I couldn't do a taste it. I certainly will make this again.

Oatmeal Raisin Bread
Makes 1 loaf (1.5 Lb. or 750 gr.)

1-1/4 cups water
1-1/4 tsp. salt
2 tbsp. granulated sugar
2 tbsp. shortening
3 cups all purpose flour or bread flour
1/3 cup oatmeal
1/2 cup buttermilk powder
1-1/4 tsp. bread machine yeast
1 cup raisins

1. Measure all ingredients except raisins into baking pan in the ordr recommeded by the manufacturer. Insert pan into the oven chamber.
2. Select Basic Cycle or Sweet Cycle.
3. Add raisins at the "add ingredients" signal.


1. Select dough cycle.
2. Add raisins.
3. Transfer dough from pan to a greased bowl to rise until doubled.
4. Deflate slightly and give two business turns and return to bowl.
5. Allow to rise until doubled
6. Deflate slightly and roll to fit a 4 x 8 bread pan.
7. Allow to rise until doubled.
8. Bake in a preheated 375 F. oven for about 35 minutes or until internal temperature reads 205 degrees.

I am not a member of the Heavenly Cake Bakers, but I do look forward each week to what was baked. There are so many wonderful cakes in the book like the Plum Ingot cakes that I can't wait to bake when plums are in season again, but recently Marie Wolf (Heavenly Cake Place)posted the Whipped Cream Cake and I couldn't wait to bake it.

My photo of the finished cake doesn't do it justice but if taste could be photographed then this photo would win first prize.

I had never made a cake where the cream is whipped and then the rest of the ingredients are added. The batter was so light and lovely. I greased the pan with Pam then floured it but after baking I had a bit of trouble removing the cake from the pan. A small piece of cake stuck to the pan but I gently removed it and placed it back on the cake. You could hardly tell after I sprinkled on the icing sugar. I had a slice with some whipped cream and wished I had had some macerated strawberries to go with this cake, one of the best tasting cakes I've ever had.


breadbasketcase said...

It's worth tracking down some Baker's Joy spray--I think it's better than Pam because it has flour mixed in the oil spray and it (usually) works really well in releasing cakes from their pans. I couldn't see any flaws in your cake at all--the beauty of photography?
And the bread looks delicious--the combination of buttermilk, raisins, and oatmeal has got to be a winner!

Melinda said...

I want to make the whipped cream cake too. Now, I can't wait to try it after I have heard all the praise for how good it tastes.

I haven't seen the buttermilk powder here, ever. I feel lucky to find fresh buttermilk!(There was a time in the 80's when no one carried buttermilk.) I sure know what you mean about keeping an eye open for those elusive ingredients. (I still haven't found diastatic malt or wheat gluten!)
Your oatmeal buttermilk raisin bread sounds almost too healthy to look so good!

doughadear said...

I don't think I've seen Baker's Joy here, so that will be another item to add to my U.S. list. I usually use shortening to grease pans, but it is a pain working it into the crevices. Can you imagine greasing that beautiful bundt pan you used for Whipped Cream Cake by hand?!

doughadear said...

The Whipped Cream Cake is just amazing!
I ordered both the diastatic malt and wheat gluten from King Arthur and I had someone from the States bring it to Canada so I saved on the shipping fees.