It’s time for another Secret Recipe Club post! It’s my 3rd month doing these, and I must say it is a lot of fun! I enjoy getting an email with the link to a food blog that I haven’t come across yet. Then browsing through their blog, drooling over pictures, opening tons of tabs with recipes I’d like to try, and then debating over which ones I can realistically get done. 🙂  It’s a fun challenge!

This month I was assigned Food Babbles. Kate loves to cook, write, and photography. As a result, she has a very nice blog and great pictures! I had a hard time narrowing down which recipe to make and post about. 🙂  My friend was looking at all my tabs and decided we should do the Cinnamon Orange Finger Bread, which Kate also calls Monkey Bread! I love calling it Monkey Bread, seeing as I love monkeys. Well, a friend nicknamed me “monkey” in college – don’t ask why. I was crazy back then you see. But not anymore. Now I’m a serious Mom to two boys. Really. 😉

We all loved this bread. It’s fun to pull it apart instead of slicing, it’s delicious, and it’s pretty. The only downside is that it dries out very quickly since it has milk and an egg in the dough. Still, you won’t regret making this! Just eat it all the same day you make it (which won’t be a problem), or you can easily rewarm it in the oven or microwave later!

The recipe below is a slight adaptation from Kate’s, in that I added wheat flour. I’m Anne Jisca’s Healthy Pursuits after all. 🙂  (I can also justify eating more this way!!!)

Cinnamon Orange Finger Bread (“Monkey” Bread)

1/4 cups water, warm
2 1/2 tsp yeast
1 1/2 cups wheat flour
1 cup all-purpose flour (plus more for kneading, if necessary)
1 tsp salt
2 Tbsp sugar
1 large egg
2 Tbsp butter, melted
3/4 cups warm milk

1/2 c. sugar
2 tsp cinnamon
zest of 1 large orange

2/3 c. sugar
2 tsp cinnamon
1 1/4 sticks of butter
2 Tbsp orange juice

Proof yeast if using dry active yeast, or skip this step if using instant.

Stir in 1 cup of flour, salt and sugar. Stir in the egg, melted butter and warm milk. Add the remaining flour in 3 additions mixing at medium speed with the dough hook after each addition. Once all the flour has been incorporated, cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let the dough rest for 30 minutes.

Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and flatten. Cut off small pieces and form into 1/2 inch balls.

In a small bowl combine the coating ingredients: 1/2 cup sugar, 2 tsp cinnamon and the zest of 1 large orange.

Roll each dough ball in the cinnamon/sugar/zest mixture and place into a greased bunt pan. After all the dough balls have been coated and placed in the pan, cover the pan lightly with plastic wrap and let the bread rise until almost doubled (about an hour).

After the dough has risen, preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Make the sauce: place the butter, 2/3 cup of sugar, 2 tablespoons of orange juice and 2 teaspoons cinnamon into a small saucepan. Over medium-low heat, melt the mixture stirring constantly until smooth.

Pour the mixture over the dough and immediately place in the oven. Bake for 40-50 minutes. After the baking is done, invert the bundt pan on a plate and allow to sit for 15 minutes with the bundt pan still on top. After 15 minutes, remove pan and cool slightly and then serve either warm or at room temperature.

Also linked at Sweets for Saturday!