Cinnamon Loaves- Makes 3 mini loaves.
1/3 cup sugar
1 tablespoon cinnamon
1/4 cup unsalted butter, melted
1 large egg
1 cup light brown sugar, packed
1/4 cup canola or vegetable oil
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 cup buttermilk
2 cups flour
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
Preheat oven to 350°. Spray 3 mini loaf tins with floured cooking spray, or grease and flour the pan; set aside. In a small bowl, combine 1/3 cup sugar with the cinnamon and stir to incorporate; set aside. In a large microwave-safe bowl, melt the butter.
After the butter has cooled momentarily (so you don’t scramble the egg), add the egg, brown sugar, oil, vanilla, and whisk to combine. Add the buttermilk and whisk to incorporate. Add the flour, nutmeg, baking soda, optional salt, and stir until just combined; don’t overmix. Batter will be thick and lumpy. Don’t try to stir the lumps smooth. It will take some effort to get the flour to blend into the sugar/milk mixture. This is totally normally, really put some elbow grease into it and it’ll happen!
Using a soup ladle, scoop about 3/4ths of a ladle into each mini tin. Bang it on the counter to flatten down the mix (or use the edge of a greased spoon). Then, sprinkle some of the cinnamon mix liberally over the top of each. Separate the remaining mix into thirds, filling each tin about halfway, or a little over halfway. Sprinkle the remaining cinnamon over the tops. This seems like a LOT of cinnamon, but a lot doesn’t stick, and this is what creates the crunchy cinnamon crust.
Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, or with a few moist crumbs, but no batter. This should take around 15-20 minutes for the mini loaves. After they begin to look “done”, I generally check just to be sure, but they usually need another 5 or so minutes after that. Allow bread to cool in pan for about 15 minutes before turning it out of the pan over a paper towel or plate to catch the extra cinnamon-sugar. You can sprinkle it back on if you like. Serve warm, with butter.