It was love at first sight for me with this cinnamon sugar star bread. Featured on the King Arthur Flour blog last month, I was mesmerized by the star pattern and set aside the first available Saturday morning to bake this showstopper.
Surprisingly simple to make (be sure to check out their step-by-step photos before you begin), this cinnamon sugar star bread is buttery bliss, a beautiful twisted bread for your holiday table.
I like this bread unadorned, dusted with powdered sugar for a snowy effect. It’s also lovely served up warm with apricot jam, a side of cranberry butter, or a drizzle of sweet vanilla glaze.
- 3 1/2 cups (490 g) flour, divided
- 1 package Red Star PLATINUM Yeast
- 1/4 cup (50 g) sugar
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 cup (240 g) low-fat milk
- 1/4 cup (56 g) unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1 large egg, at room temperature
- 3 Tbsp (42 g) unsalted butter, melted
- 1/2 cup (100 g) sugar
- 2 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- Combine 2 cups (280 g) flour, yeast, sugar, and salt in a large mixer bowl; mix on low speed until incorporated. Heat milk in a microwave-safe measuring cup for 45 seconds to 1 minute, until very warm (120-130°F). Add warm milk, butter, and egg to flour mixture and mix until combined; mix in remaining 1 1/2 cups (210 g) flour. Switch out the flat beater for a dough hook, and knead dough for 5 minutes until smooth and elastic. The dough is ready when it feels tacky but doesn't stick to your fingers (if necessary, add additional flour 1 tablespoon at a time while kneading).
- Place dough in a large bowl coated with nonstick spray and cover with plastic. Let the dough rise in a warm place until doubled in size, about 40 minutes. To check if dough has doubled, lightly flour two fingers and press them down into center of dough. If indentations remain, gently press down dough; cover and let rest 5 minutes.
- Turn dough out on a lightly floured board and divide into four equal pieces. Shape each piece into a ball, and let rest for 5 minutes. Roll one piece of dough out into a 10-inch circle, and transfer to a parchment-lined baking sheet. Brush with melted butter, leaving a 1/4-inch border. Combine sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl, and sprinkle dough evenly with 1/3 of the cinnamon-sugar.
- Roll out the second piece of dough into a 10-inch circle, and stack on top of the first piece of dough. Brush with melted butter and sprinkle with cinnamon-sugar; repeat process with remaining dough, leaving the top circle bare.
- Place a 2 1/2-inch round cutter in the center of the dough; press gently to leave an imprint. Use a sharp knife to cut the circle into 4 equal sections, from the imprint in the center to the edge, cutting through all the layers. Cut each section into 4 equal strips, for a total of 16 strips.
- Using both hands, pick up 2 adjacent dough strips and twist them away from each other twice. Pinch the ends of the strips together firmly. Repeat with remaining strips of dough, for a total of 8 points. Cover the star loosely with plastic and let rise in a warm place until puffy, about 25 minutes. While the star rises, preheat oven to 375°F.
- Brush star with remaining melted butter and bake for about 25 minutes, until golden. Remove from oven and place on a wire rack to cool for 20 minutes before dusting with powdered sugar and serving.