Cranberry Twist Bread

.  Hi all!  How is everyone's weekend thus far?  I know, it's basically over, but we do still have a bit of the day, so let's make the most of it and get right into this recipe.

Cranberry Twist Bread.  Pretty?  Yes.  Flavorful?  You bet.  My favorite?  Well, this time around...not quite.  Granted, this bread is very good and I love the cranberry-orange combination.  However, I made the mistake of not using fresh or frozen cranberries and instead used dried, which didn't give the filling the texture I was quite hoping for.  Lesson learned.  But other than that, this is a beautiful, festive bread, that would 'wow' any of your holiday guests.  And it's a great little snack to have around for people to nibble on.  Or just stare at.  It really is that pretty.

Sorry for the short post but I must get back to my December To-Do List.  It's gradually shrinking but I still have a number of things to get done before Christmas weekend.  Happy Sunday!  .

My Notes:
  • I used my standing mixer to make the bread, which I've noted in the directions.  However, if you don't have a standing mixer, you can also use a hand mixer and reference BHG for mixing directions.
  • I only needed a large orange for all of the orange zest and orange juice required for this recipe.  If you use smaller ones, you may need two, but wanted to give you a starting point.
  • You can, of course, use dried cranberries as I did.  However, I would think that fresh or frozen cranberries would really make this bread.
  • Okay, funny story.  As I was writing out this post (I usually add in this notes section afterward) I realized another one of my mistakes.  Instead of cutting the dough roll lengthwise, I simply cut the roll in half!  Hence, I got two HUGE rolls and I had the hardest time twisting them.  So don't make my same mistake.
  • I would suggest not icing the bread until it is fairly cooled.  Otherwise, the icing drips right off and you'll have to re-scoop it back on to the bread.  Patience is key.  I learned this the hard way.

2-3/4 to 3 c. all purpose flour
1 package active dry yeast
3/4 c. milk
1/3 c. sugar
2 tbsp. butter
1/2 tsp. salt
1 egg
1/2 c. finely chopped cranberries
2 tbsp. finely chopped pecans
1-1/2 tsp. orange zest
1/2 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
1-1/2 tsp. butter, melted

Orange Icing:
1-1/2 c. powdered sugar
1-1/2 tsp. orange zest
2 to 3 tbsp. orange juice 

1.  In bowl of standing mixer, stir together 1 cup of flour and yeast.

2.  In a small saucepan, heat and stir milk, 2 tablespoons sugar, 2 tablespoons butter, and salt.

3.  Add milk mixture to flour mixture; add egg.  Beat on low to medium speed for 30 seconds.  Switch to dough hook and while on low to medium speed, gradually add in remaining flour.  Knead until dough smooth and elastic (only a minute or two).  Shape dough into ball and place into lightly greased bowl.  Cover and let rise in warm place (1 to 1-1/2 hours).

4.  For filling, in a small bowl, combine cranberries, remaining sugar, pecans, orange zest, and pumpkin pie spice.  Set aside.

5.  Once risen, punch down dough and turn out to lightly floured surface.  Cover and let rise 10 minutes.  Grease baking sheet.  Roll dough into 14x10-inch rectangle.

6.  Brush with melted butter.  Evenly spread filling over dough.

7.  Starting from long side, roll dough into spiral.  Seal seam.  Place seam side down and cut roll in half lengthwise.  Place cut sides up, side by side, on baking sheet.  Loosely twist halves together, keeping the cut sides up.  Pinch ends to seal.  Cover and let rise in warm place until nearly doubles (about 30 minutes).

8.  Heat oven to 375°F.  Bake 25 minutes or until golden brown (if necessary, cover with foil last 10 minutes to prevent overbrowning).  Transfer to wire rack to cool.

9.  Meanwhile, for icing, in medium bowl combine powdered sugar, orange peel, and enough orange juice to make icing a drizzling consistency.  Drizzle icing over bread.

Yield: 16 servings


  1. YES please! Oh, this looks divine!!!! Where do you find the time to bake?!

  2. What a great party. So many yummy things. We linked up a terrific Kahula cinnamon cocoa today. Delicious. Be sure to come by today. We have another giveaway just in time for Christmas! Register to win a wonderful autographed book!

  3. It looks wonderful, perfect for a breakfast in bed!

  4. This is a beautiful bread! Not to mention it looks completely delicious! This may very well end up on My Christmas table. Yum! And buzzed!

  5. A beautiful bread! I love the twist. Thanks for sharing on Crazy Sweet Tuesday!

  6. @Jess @ Blonde Ponytail Haha believe me, I really have no clue. But I always manage to squeeze it in somehow, keeps me sane ;)

    @Sue @ Cakeballs,cookies and more Ha, that would actually be a great idea! I never thought of that, too bad for my boyfriend ;)

    @Janet@fromcupcakestocaviar Aww, thanks for the buzz! I'd love to know if you end up making this and your thoughts.


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