Are you familiar with cardamom? It is a wonderful spice with a subtle flavor, used mostly in baking.
Cardamom is the secret ingredient in this recipe. This mild flavored, somewhat sweet bread is the perfect carrier for your favorite jelly or spread, i.e. Nutella or honey.
If you’re like me, you don’t like to pay 4-5$ plus for a spice to use in only one recipe–especially an experiment. My suggestion is to buy a small amount where spices are sold in bulk. This is a great idea if you live in a metroplex area where stores like Central Market or Whole Foods are located. If you live in a less populated area you may not have that luxury. In which case, you’ll have to trust me that cardamom is worth the money. You will find other uses for it if you are a baker. Check out my recipe for Banana Whole Wheat Bread that also calls for cardamom. It is one of my all-time favorites.
You might be tempted to substitute cinnamon. And you could. And it will probably be delicious. But I promise, if you try the cardamom, people will rave. They will ask you about that mysterious flavor. More than likely, they will come back for another slice. It is THAT good.
- ¾ cup warm milk
- ¼ cup sugar
- ¼ cup butter
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¾ teaspoon cardamom
- 1 egg
- 3 cups flour, all-purpose, unbleached
- 2¼ teaspoons bread machine yeast
- Add to bread machine in order given or according to instructions in bread machine manual. Select dough cycle.
- When cycle is completed, dough should be smooth, elastic and risen to double original size. Remove from pan to lightly floured surface. Divide into 3 balls and let relax for about 10 minutes.
- Roll each ball into a long cylinder shape approximately 14 inches long. Braid these shapes, pinching ends under, securely. See images below. Don’t think about it too hard–it’s just like braiding hair. If this method doesn’t work for you, divide dough into two balls. Smooth them and place side by side in 9 x 5 bread pan.
- Set aside to raise again until almost double. Brush milk over bread and very carefully sprinkle with light coating of sugar.
- Bake in preheated oven at 375 degrees for 20 to 25 minutes. Cover with foil last 10 minutes, if necessary, to prevent overbrowning. Remove from baking sheet to cool.