Iced Christmas Bread
2 1/2 c Flour, divided
1 c Warm milk (105F-to-115F)
1 pk Active dry yeast
1/4 c Sugar
1 Egg; at room temperature
1/2 ts Salt
1/2 c Butter; at room temperature
1/2 c Glazed cherries
1/2 c Chopped mixed candied fruit
1/2 c Date bits
1/2 c Coarsely chopped walnuts or pecans
1 Egg; beaten, mixed with
1 ts Milk or water
1/2 c Confectioners' sugar
1/2 tb Vegetable oil
1/4 ts Almond extract
7 Glazed cherries, halves
7 Ppecan halves
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Mix together 1 cup of the flour, the milk, yeast and sugar. Add the egg,
salt, and butter. Add the remaining 1 1/2 cups of flour, 1/2 cup at a time.
Knead the dough until elastic and smooth.
Mix the cherries, candied fruit, dates and nuts together and fold and knead
1/3 of the mixture at a time into the dough until well mixed.
Place dough in an oiled bowl. Turn dough to coat. Cover and let rise in a
warm place until doubled, about an hour. Punch down.
Grease a 9x5-inch pan.
Divide the dough into 2 halves and place on the pan.
Let rise again until doubled. Brush the loaves with the egg glaze.
Bake on the middle shelf about 40 to 50 minutes until nicely browned.
Cover with foil if the loaf browns too rapidly. Cool on a wire rack.
Mix confectioners' sugar, oil, almond extract and enough water to make a
mixture a smooth consistency.
Brush cooled bread with icing.
For the topping, add the glazed cherries and pecan halves.
Makes 2 Loaves