Holiday Cardamom Bread

Summary

Yield
12 Servings
SourceSharon Hammond (1993)
Prep time
2 hours, 30 minutes
Cooking time
30 minutes
Total time
3 hours

Ingredients

4 1⁄3 c
flour (About that much, divided)
1⁄3 c
sugar (plus 2 T., divided)
1 t
salt
1 t
cardamom, ground
2 pk
active dry yeast
1⁄2 c
butter or margarine
1⁄2 c
water and milk (each)
1⁄2 c
raisins
2
eggs (slightly beaten, divided)
2 T
almonds, chopped

Instructions

In large bowl, combine 1 cup flour, 1/3 cup sugar, salt, cardamom and yeast. In small saucepan melt butter. Add water, milk and raisins; heat to 120°. Add to flour mixture. Beat with mixer on medium speed 2 minutes. Remove 2 tablespoons beaten eggs; reserve for later. Add remaining eggs and 1 cup flour to above mixture; beat on high speed 2 minutes. Stir in enough flour to make a soft dough. Turn out on floured surface and knead 8 to 10 minutes, or until smooth and elastic. Place in greased bowl; turn to grease top. Cover and let rise in warm, draft-free place 1 hour or until doubled.

Punch down; turn out on lightly floured surface. Using more flour if necessary, knead until smooth and elastic. Cut dough into 3 equal pieces. Shape each to a 30-inch long rope. Braid ropes loosely; transfer braid to lightly greased baking sheet and shape in wreath, pinching ends firmly together. Place a 6-ounce custard cup, greased on outside, upside down in hole in center to retain shape. Cover and let rise in warm, draft-free place about 45 minutes, or until doubled.

Brush with reserved egg; sprinkle with mixture of remaining sugar and almonds. Bake in preheated 375° oven for 25 to 30 minutes, or until golden and done. Remove to rack to cool. Serve or wrap airtight. Best eaten within 1 week.