Traditional Croatian Povitica

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Total Time
4 hrs
1 hr

This is our family recipe as dictated to me by my Great-Aunt. We have this every year during Easter and Christmas.

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  1. Combine filling ingredients except raisins in a heavy saucepan. Cook over low heat, stirring often, until the mixture is fairly thick (about 30 minutes). Set aside to cool.
  2. In a large heated bowl, combine yeast, warm water and 1/2 tsp sugar; stir until yeast is dissolved. Set in a warm place for about 5 minutes, until foamy.
  3. Combine 1/2 cup sugar, melted butter and salt. Add boiling water; stir and cool until lukewarm. Add this mixture to yeast.
  4. Stir in beaten eggs and add flour gradually.
  5. Turn out onto a floured board and knead about 5 minutes. This will be softer than bread dough. Place in a greased bowl; cover and set in a warm place to rise until double in bulk.
  6. Method for rolling out dough: Cover a work table with a large cotton dish towel or a cloth large enough to cover the entire table. Sprinkle cloth lightly with flour all over the cloth. Put dough in center and roll out as thin as possible with a rolling pin, maintaining a square or rectangle shape.
  7. Spread the pulled dough evenly with the prepared filling.
  8. Sprinkle with raisins.
  9. Roll up the povitica as for a jelly roll, by lifting the cloth up on one side and letting the dough roll itself up.
  10. Place in a large greased baking pan, two inches deep and form it into an "S" shape. Tuck in the ends and flatten it a little. This may also be cut in half and baked in angel food cake pans or bread pans.
  11. Cover and let raise for 2-1/2 hours in a warm place.
  12. Bake in a preheated oven at 375°F for 10 minutes, then reduce to 350°F for 50 minutes until nicely browned.
  13. Cool in pan for 30 minutes then remove from pan and finish cooling on wire rack.