4cupswhite whole wheat flour* or blend of all-purpose and whole wheat flour
1cupSun-Maid Natural or Golden Raisins
Grated zest of one orange
Preheat oven to 375°F.
In a large bowl, combine flour, raisins, and remaining dry ingredients and orange zest. Stir and make a well in the center.
Pour buttermilk into the well. Stir with a wooden spoon just until the wet and dry ingredients come together. The less mixing the better. The mixture will bubble slightly, especially if using fresh buttermilk.
Form the dough into a mound with floured hands. You can work in the bowl if you don't want to messy your counter.
Place on a baking sheet and flatten to about 2-1/2 inches in height. For shorter bake time, divide dough in half to make two smaller loaves. Slash a cross about ½-inch deep across the top.
Bake until deep golden brown and a pick inserted in center comes out clean, about 45 minutes or about 25 minutes for two small loaves. Cover with foil the last 5-10 minutes if needed to prevent over browning or raisins from burning.
Cool on a wire rack. Serve slightly warm or room temperature. Wrap well and keep at room temperature 2-3 days, or longer refrigerated. Toast slices if refrigerated.
*Notes: In place of buttermilk, use regular milk and replace 2 tablespoons milk with 2 tablespoons vinegar or lemon juice. Dough may be a little sticky and need 3-4 tablespoons more flour. Use all-purpose white flour if you like a less coarse bread, or a combination of white and whole wheat. I like white whole wheat flour which is milled from a hard white wheat berry and retains the bran and the germ, like whole wheat flour but less coarse. It isn’t completely white, and produces a slightly sweet flavor with 4 grams of fiber per ¼ cup just like whole wheat flour, vs less than 1 gram in white flour.