One night, a month or so ago, I came home to the following note from my sister:
Next to the note was a slice of the churro bread in question. It was a cakey cinnamon quick bread with some cinnamon sugar on top from Kneader’s, which is a local bakery/restaurant chain. It was pretty good, but I knew I could do better, and so the mouth science commenced.
What Is A Quick Bread?
According to our good friend, Wikipedia:
Quick bread is any bread leavened with a chemical leavening agent rather than a biological one like yeast or sourdough starter. An advantage of quick breads is their ability to be prepared quickly and reliably, without requiring the time-consuming skilled labor and the climate control needed for traditional yeast breads.Wikipedia article on quick bread
So, technically any kind of baked good leavened with baking powder or baking soda. We don’t really often think of cakes, cookies, muffins and that sort of thing as quick bread normally in my experience, even though they fit the definition. Those are all their own category, in my opinion. When people say “quick bread” they typically mean loaves leavened with baking powder or baking soda such as banana bread, poppy seed bread, etc. See my sprinkletastic chocolate chip banana bread for an example of quick bread. 😉
The Churro Bread Testing
Now, on to the testing! First, I looked at a few very basic quick bread recipes to get the ratio of dry to wet ingredients dialed in. Next, I added buttermilk, sour cream, cinnamon, and a cinnamon sugar topping. Round 1 was not sweet enough. Round two was better, but the sourness from the buttermilk was kind of overwhelming. Round 3 was just right.
For the third round, I swapped regular milk for the buttermilk, and that solved the sourness problem and left me with a light, moist, bouncy, cakey-crumbed delight.
How to Make Churro Bread
For this recipe, I found that I liked the texture better when I used the creaming method for combining the butter with the sugar. With the creaming method, you take softened butter and mix it with the sugar until the mixture is light and fluffy, then you add the rest of the wet ingredients, and then the dry. I did this in my mixer. However, if you reeeeeally don’t want to get the mixer dirty, or don’t have one, you can melt the butter and mix it with the sugar in a bowl, add the rest of the wet ingredients, and then the dry. The churro bread will just be a little bit denser.
After the batter is finished, put it in a greased loaf pan, smooth out the top, and sprinkle on about 2 tablespoons of cinnamon sugar. To make cinnamon sugar, you just combine 2 parts sugar with 1 part cinnamon. 2 tablespoons of sugar and 1 tablespoon of cinnamon, for example. We always have a shaker full of cinnamon sugar for…emergencies.
Bake your churro bread at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 40 to 45 minutes. Mine was done at about 43 minutes. You’ll know it’d done when a cake tester comes out clean and the loaf springs back slightly when you press on the top.
The reward for your efforts will be a pillowy soft cinnamon loaf with a slightly crunchy, craggly cinnamon sugar crust to sink your teeth into. Enjoy with a glass of cold milk.
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- loaf pan
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter softened
- 1 and 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 large eggs
- 1 cup milk I use 2%
- 1/2 cup sour cream full fat
- 2 cups all purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
- 1 Tablespoon baking powder
- 1 and 3/4 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 2 Tablespoons cinnamon sugar mix 2 parts sugar to 1 part cinnamon to make cinnamon sugar.
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit with a rack in the middle position.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together the butter and sugar on medium speed until the butter appears lighter in color, about 1-2 minutes.
- Add the vanilla extract, and mix until combined.
- Add eggs one at a time, mixing until combined after each egg is added.
- Add the milk and sour cream. Mix to combine. If you can, cover the bowl of your mixer to prevent splashing.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, salt, baking powder, and ground cinnamon. Add the dry mixture to the wet mixture in the mixer.
- Mix on low speed until combined. Do not overmix.
- Prepare a loaf pan by spraying it liberally with baking spray.
- Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan, and even out the top with a rubber spatula. Sprinkle the cinnamon sugar evenly over the top of the batter.
- Bake for 40-45 minutes, or until a cake tester comes out clean.
- Let cool in the pan for about 15 minutes, then remove the churro bread from the pan and place it on a wire cooling rack. Let cool to room temperature (or as long as you can 😉 )