Sweet Christmas Loaf
|Dry yeast||1⁄4 Ounce (1 Package)|
|Warm water||1⁄4 Cup (4 tbs), divided (105� To 115�F)|
|Butter/Margarine||1⁄4 Cup (4 tbs), melted|
|Egg||1 , beaten|
|Sugar||1⁄4 Cup (4 tbs)|
|All-purpose flour||3 1⁄2 Cup (56 tbs)|
|Chopped pecans||1⁄4 Cup (4 tbs)|
|Chopped candied citron||2 Tablespoon|
|Butter/Margarine||2 Tablespoon, melted|
|Ground cinnamon||1 1⁄2 Teaspoon|
|Sifted powdered sugar||1 Cup (16 tbs)|
|Milk||1 1⁄2 Tablespoon|
|Vegetable oil||1⁄2 Teaspoon|
|Vanilla extract||1⁄2 Teaspoon|
|Almond extract||1⁄4 Teaspoon|
|Toasted sliced almonds||2 Tablespoon|
1) Preheat oven to 375° F.
2) Take a small bowl and dissolve yeast with 1/4 cup warm water and in it.
3) Take a large bowl and combine together butter, egg, salt, 1/4 cup sugar and 1/2 cup water in it.
4) Add the yeast mixture and stir well.
5) Gradually stir in 1 cup flour. Beat at medium speed, with the help of an electric mixer, for about 2 minutes.
6) Add enough of the remaining flour to make soft dough.
7) Place dough on a floured surface and let rest for about 10 minutes.
8) Knead for about 8-10 minutes or until elastic and smooth.
9) Place the dough in a nicely greased bowl. Turn the greased side up.
10) Cover and let rise in a warm place (about 85° F), free from drafts, for about 1 hour or until double in size.
11) Roll the dough into a 10- x 14 inch rectangle and place on a greased baking sheet.
12) Take a bowl and combine together the next 6 ingredients in it.
13) Spread the filling down the center of triangle, leaving about 1 inch margin at each end.
14) Take kitchen shears and make 3 inch diagonal cuts 1-inch apart on each side of the rectangle.
15) Starting at one end, bring the corresponding dough strips to the center at an angle. Overlap the opposite sides.
16) Fold the next set of dough strips in such a way that they cover the overlap of first folded strips.
17) Repeat with the remaining strips, alternating the top strip so as to resemble braiding.
18) Fold the end of rectangle and tuck under (one end should be open and should have the filling showing).
19) Cover and let rise in a warm place (about 85° F), free from drafts, for about 1 hour or until doubled.
20) Take a small bowl and combine 1 tablespoon water with egg white. Brush loaf with the mixture.
21) Bake for about 18-20 minutes or until golden brown in color.
22) Remove from baking sheet and place on a wire rack to cool.
23) Take a bowl and combine together milk, powdered sugar, oil and flavorings. Drizzle over bread while it is still warm.
24) Garnish with almonds and candied cherries. Slice and serve immediately.