Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Sh-h-h! I have the Secret Starbucks Chocolate Cinnamon Bread Recipe...

I love to browse through recipes on the internet.

Sometimes, I find these rogue sites claiming they have the secret recipes of well-known restaurants. Secret recipes? You're kidding.

It was on one of these websites that I came across one particular recipe that caught my eye. Starbucks Chocolate Cinnamon Bread. C'mon, don't play coy with me.....you know the one I'm talking about. It's the bread that you see in the display case while you're in line waiting to order your coffee. I don't know about you, but it calls to me. I can almost smell the chocolate through the glass. The bread is dark, dense and moist-looking......but until right now, I have never waivered. One reason is that it's about $3.00 a slice, and the other is that I also discovered that it packs about 425 calories a serving. But you didn't hear that from me. Just for today, let's pretend it's low calorie, okay?? Makes the guilt AND the bread a little easier to swallow.

So when I saw this recipe, I had to try it......and just to shake things up a bit, I decided to bake it at my sister's house. That's right. Fasten your seatbelts, we're going to Kathy's.
My sister has a great kitchen and I know she will roll her eyes when I say that I am envious. Compared to my kitchen, she has tons of storage space in miles of beautiful cabinetry, stainless appliances, hardwood floors and shiny black granite countertops. (Sorry, she wouldn't let me photograph the kitchen because there were dishes in the sink) It also has an abundance of natural light which is ideal for my food photography.Kathy also has a lot of pretty bowls. In fact, one of the bowls was a gift from her to me......about 14 years ago. She "baby-sits' it, or should I say she "bowl-sits" because I don't have any extra storage space to keep it in my kitchen.
Okay, I'm ready to bake! The ingredients are assembled so let the madness begin.

See Kathy's countertops? So shiny.

Sift together the cocoa, sugar, flour and salt and set aside.

(Oh good, Cam's home from school........he can join in the madness...)

In a separate bowl, combine buttermilk, water and vanilla and mix together.

In a third bowl, combine softened butter with the sugar and mix with an electric mixer (hand mixer is fine) until soft and creamy.

Then add the eggs, one at a time....................

...and beat it up like crazy!

Alternate the dry ingredients and the wet ingredients into the butter,sugar and egg mixture and beat until fully combined.

See? This is my bowl.

It lives with my sister.

I visit when I can.

Next, use a spatula to scrape every last stinkin' drop of chocolate batter out of that bowl and divide it evenly between two loaf pans. While I was making this, I was thinking how fun it would be to add some additional ingredients to the batter..........peanuts, peanut butter, bananas, marshmallow, raisins, etc. Sky's the limit!!! Hmmmmm, next time.

After I pour the batter, I always give the pans a couple of good hard slams on the countertop to release my tension any air bubbles in the batter.

Next, mix up the Cocoa Sugar Topping and sprinkle generously on top of each loaf before popping them into the oven to bake.

On the sidelines.....my girl Emily just lounged around watching us bake.
All day.

Wait! What the heck is that??? A little stealth Helicopter? Maybe it's flying around trying to steal my super-secret-it's-all-over-the-internet recipe for Starbucks Chocolate Cinnamon Bread!

No, whew!.......It's just my nephew Cam, trying to decapitate me with his little Brookstone helicopter.

It's the size of a sparrow...........and is just as fast! It's hard for me to get a clear shot with my camera.

Uh-oh...Emily's up. Her ears are back and she clearly looks annoyed....

It looks like a giant bug and .............oh good grief Gerty, it's headed for my hair!!

Hey....if you want to spend any time at my sister's house, you have to be prepared to lose an eye or two....................(screams!).......

Cue the "Jaws" music......and.....

Got it!

And the moral to this story is........Boxers do not like helicopters. Especially the little noisy ones.

Now, back to our regularly scheduled broadcast..........

Ding!.....The bread's done!


Yep...., it's what I thought. Rich, dark and moist.

I had lots of helpers today.

You could smell the cinnamon and chocolate baking all over the neighborhood...and as usual when I bake.....birds sang, dogs barked, children cried and angels wept.


Yeah, it's that good.
Try it and see....here's the secret recipe.


(this recipe will make two loaves)

3 sticks unsalted butter at room temperature
3 cups granulated sugar
5 eggs at room temperature
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 and 1/4 cups Dutch-process Cocoa Powder
1 Tbsp Ground Cinnamon
1 Tsp Salt
1 Cup of Buttermilk
1/2 tsp Baking Powder
1/2 tsp Baking Soda
1 cup 1/4 cup water
1 tsp Vanilla Extract

Cocoa-Sugar Topping

1/4 cup granulated sugar
3/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp Dutch-process Cocoa Powder
Pinch Ground Ginger
Pinch Ground Cloves
1/4 cup decorating or sparkle (coarse) sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease two 9 x 5x 3 loaf pans. You can also line the bottom of each pan with parchment paper (optional)

In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream together the butter and sugar with medium speed. When the mixture is creamed together, add the eggs one at a time. Beat until blended. In a second bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cocoa powder and cinnamon. In a third bowl, whisk together the buttermilk, water and vanilla.

With the mixer on medium speed, alternate adding the dry and wet ingredients to the creamed butter,sugar and egg mixture, beginning and ending with the flour mixture. Do not overbeat! Mix until just blended. Divide mixture evenly between the two loaf pans. Shake pans gently (I told you I just slam them) to even out the batter and break any air bubbles.

Cocoa Spice Sugar Topping

Mix cocoa, cinnamon, nutmeg, sparkle sugar, ginger and cloves. Generously sprinkle over both loaf pans and place into the oven. Bake until toothpick inserted comes out clean.......about 45- 50 minutes. Let cool completely before running a knife around the edges to release them from the pans.

Sh-h-h-h-h-h! Remember it's a secret.

.....And the password is YUM.


Anonymous said...

Awesome posting!! Can't wait to try this recipe. It's so fun reading your blog, I felt like I was right there baking with you. You crack me up girl!!

Minka said...

Cool! So much going around while baking bread! I bet it's delicious!

Aunt Grace said...

That...looked so good. I also loved the look of the birthday cakes. I see Brenna peeking over the top, and she looks so happy. Kathy and John's children have it all, it is wonderful to know you two are doing so well, and what a reward to have a family like that. At Karen's it was a riot when I walked in with the Shafferin Bergin cookies. Bill almost tackled me. Every one LOVED them. I hid two in my purse.

Anonymous said...

okay. Is it bad to say I'm more impressed with the dog? (the bread looks good too) Marg.

Lisa said...

OOHHH! That looks like fun......you know you could leave a bowl or two at my house too.

AND the bread "MMMM" We must try it! I'll let you know.

Love! Love to Kathy too!

Anonymous said...

Thank you a lot :D

Anonymous said...

This looks wonderful and I'm dying to make it!

But I do have a question, one of the steps says "In a separate bowl, combine buttermilk, water and vanilla and mix together." but I cannot see buttermilk listed in the ingredients list.

Is this "buttermilk" a term used and not the actually product?

Starbucks doesn't have this lovely beauty in the UK but it looks so yum I can't wait to make it!
Thank you! :D

SimplySweeter said...

Hi D!

So sorry about that!!! Yes..the recipe calls for 1 cup of buttermilk OR you can substitute 1 cup of milk with 1 Tablespoon of lemon juice or vinegar. Have fun making it...you won't believe how good it is!!!