The person who gets the bean in their portion of this wonderful sweet bread becomes ruler of the day (or week) at Mardi Gras time in New Orleans. Even though this is a traditional holiday bread, it's wonderful ANY time of year. The mixing and heavy kneading may be done in the bread machine, if desired. From an old Family Circle cookbook.
- 1⁄2 cup butter or 1⁄2 cup margarine (if using margarine, NOT spread or tub product)
- 2⁄3 cup evaporated milk
- 1⁄2 cup granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 5 eggs
- 2 envelopes active dry yeast
- 1⁄3 cup warm water
- 1 tablespoon grated fresh lemon rind
- 1 tablespoon grated orange rind
- 5 1⁄2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 dried beans
- 1 cup confectioners' sugar (powdered)
- sliced candied citron peel, for garnish
- candy sprinkles, for garnish
- Combine butter or margarine, evaporated milk, granulated sugar, and salt in a small saucepan.
- Heat slowly until butter is melted; cool to lukewarm.
- Beat four of the eggs in a large bowl with a wire whip; stir in milk mixture.
- Sprinkle yeast and 1 teaspoon sugar into warm water in a cup.
- Stir until yeast dissolves; allow to stand until mixture bubbles (approximately ten minutes).
- Add to egg mixture, blending well.
- Add lemon and orange rind.
- Mix flour into egg mixture, one cup at a time to make a stiff dough.
- Turn out onto a lightly floured pastry cloth or board; knead until smooth and elastic (about ten minutes), adding only enough extra flour to keep the dough from sticking.
- Place in a large greased bowl; turn dough to coat all over with shortening.
- Cover with a towel and let rise in a warm place until double in bulk.
- Punch down; knead a few times and divide in half.
- Using the palms of your hands, roll half into a 20" rope; lift ends and twist loosely one or two times.
- Place on a large greased cookie sheet in a half circle.
- Repeat with the other half of the dough, pinching the ends of the ropes together to form a large ring about 12 inches in diameter.
- Lift the ring slightly at one side and push the bean about an inch into the dough from the bottom.
- Cover and let rise again until double.
- While the dough rises, beat remaining egg in a small bowl and brush over dough.
- Preheat the oven to 375F during the second rising.
- Bake for 30 minutes, or until a golden brown and the bread gives a hollow sound when tapped.
- Slide carefully from the baking sheet to a wire rack; cool thoroughly.
- Before serving, mix the powdered sugar slowly with water until smooth and of drizzling consistency (you should only need a couple of tablespoonsful of water).
- Drizzle over the ring and decorate with candied citron and sprinkles.
OMG, this is wonderful. I tried to make this yesterday and thought I was doing something wrong, but it was just the yeast. I shaped mine in a long instead of round. The lemon and orange peel really added a flavor.This is definitely a keeper. Thanks Molly53
Very good! Made the dough in my breadmaker, shaped it, then let it rise for half an hour. I aslo halve the recipe and it still was rather big. I made it at night and had it for snack at 10:00, then froze and had some for breakfast in the morning. Will definitely do it again soon.
Wonderful Cake. I love the wonderful fluffy texture and the lemon and orange flavours. I followed the recipe exactly, except that I halfed the recipe. My cake was done in 25 minutes and came out great. But who will get the BEAN? Who knows? It could be you. A must try recipe.