Never mind smearing preserves or jam all over your bread. This bread has all the good stuff inside, both mixed into the dough and swirled through the baked bread. The recipe yields a large, soft, semi-sweet loaf with a pretty swirl of sweet-tart blackberry preserves running through it. Nonetheless, the bread isn't cloyingly sweet. The sourdough tang as well as a bit of orange zest balances the sweetness of the jam. Do you have to use blackberry preserves? No, of course not. Use whatever flavor of preserves or jam you have on hand and enjoy. Keep the possibilities to lower-sugar preserves and jams if possible, though, and avoid jellys, which will melt too much. The recipe is especially good made with strawberry preserves or orange marmalade!
Sourdough Blackberry Preserve Swirl Bread -- Makes 1 Loaf
1 cup of starter (I use a whole-wheat-based starter, but use what you have)
1/4 cup of canola oil
5 tablespoons of blackberry preserves (seedless!)
1-2 teaspoons of grated orange zest
1/2 cup of whole-wheat flour
1 cup of all-purpose flour, divided
1 teaspoon of salt
1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon, plus extra for sprinkling
Sugar for sprinkling
In a large bowl, combine the starter, oil, egg, 2 tablespoons of preserves, the orange zest, and the whole-wheat flour. Beat the ingredients together well, cover the bowl loosely with plastic wrap, and let the mixture sit for at least an hour. Then add 1/2 cup of the all-purpose flour and the salt and stir/knead the mixture. Add the remaining 1/2 cup of all-purpose flour gradually, while you knead the dough for about 5 minutes. Flatten the dough out into a 12-inch or so square. Spread the remaining preserves out evenly over the dough square, stopping about 1/2-inch from the edges. Then dust the top of the preserves with the cinnamon. Starting at one side, roll up the dough, jelly-roll-style, and tuck the ends underneath the roll. Place the dough, seam-side-down, into a 9- x 5-inch loaf pan that you have coated with non-stick cooking spray. Spritz the top of the dough with cooking spray and sprinkle on a teaspoon or two of sugar and a little cinnamon. Cover the dough loosely with plastic wrap and let it rise for 1-3 hours or until the dough just reaches the top of the pan. Heat the oven to 375 degrees and bake the dough for about 40-50 minutes or until golden brown. Let the bread cool completely before slicing it.