You get a double cinnamon hit—in the bread as well as in the swirl. After sprinkling on the cinnamon sugar, feel free to add some raisins to the mix.
By tepid, we mean the milk should be the temperature of a baby’s bath—just barely warm.
2 ½ teaspoons active dry yeast
1 1/2 cups whole milk, warmed to tepid
1 stick (8 tablespoons) butter melted but not hot
4 cups all-purpose flour, plus 2 teaspoons for the swirl
2 tsp salt
1/4 cup granulated sugar, plus 1/4 cup for the swirl
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon, plus 2 teaspoons for the swirl
1 egg, beaten
Sprinkle yeast over warm milk; let stand until yeast dissolves and starts to expand, about 5 minutes; whisk in butter.
Meanwhile, pulse 4 cups of flour, salt, 1/4 cup of the sugar, and 2 teaspoon of the cinnamon in the work bowl of a food processor. Add milk mixture; process until it forms a soft, rough mass, about 30 seconds. (Dough will firm up as butter solidifies.)
Turn dough onto a lightly floured surface to form a smooth ball; place into a vegetable cooking spray-coated large bowl and then cover with plastic wrap. Place in a warm place until dough doubles, 1 1/2 to 3 hours, depending on room temperature. Mix remaining 1/4 cup of sugar with remaining 2 teaspoons of cinnamon and flour.
Turn dough onto a lightly floured work surface, stretching it into a 20-by 9-inch rectangle; brush with egg and sprinkle with cinnamon sugar. With the 9-inch side facing you, roll dough into a tight cylinder and place it in a vegetable cooking spray-coated 9-inch loaf pan.
Cover pan with a damp towel; let rise until almost doubled in size, 1 hour to 1 1/2 hours, depending on room temperature.
Ten to 15 minutes before baking, heat oven to 350 degrees. Brush dough with remaining egg wash and bake until crust is brown and interior registers 190 degrees, about 45 minutes. Turn loaf onto a wire rack to cool. (Cooled loaf can be wrapped in plastic wrap and stored at room temperature a day or two or wrapped loaf can be placed in a zipper-lock bag and frozen up to 1 month.) Slice, toast, serve!