Prep 30 mins
Cook 1 hr
This recipe was found on the internet at easteuropeanfood.about.com. Preparation time does not include the times needed for the dough to rise several times.
- 2 (1/4 ounce) packages active dry yeast
- 1 cup granulated sugar, divided
- 1 1⁄2 cups milk, warm
- 8 1⁄2 cups all-purpose flour, divided
- 1 1⁄2 teaspoons salt
- 4 ounces unsalted butter, melted
- 3 large eggs, beaten
- 3⁄4 lb dried fruit, chopped fine
- 1 1⁄2 cups light raisins
- 2⁄3 cup walnuts, chopped
- 2 ounces unsalted butter, melted (again)
- 1⁄2 cup granulated sugar (again)
- 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
- In a large bowl whisk together yeast, JUST 1/2 cup of the sugar, milk, JUST 3 cups of the flour & salt, combining until smooth, then cover & let stand for 1 hour.
- After the 1 hour, add the 4 ounces of melted butter, eggs, another 1/2 cup of sugar & the remaining flour, & knead until smooth & elastic, about 5 minutes.
- Add chopped fruits, raisins & nuts & knead until well incorporated, then cover & let rise until doubled, about 1 hour.
- In a small container, mix 1/2 cup of sugar with the cinnamon & set aside, then grease two large loaf pans.
- Divide dough in half &, on a lightly floured surface, roll each half, one at a time, into a rectangle about 12 inches by 16 inches.
- Spread each half with melted butter & the sugar/cinnamon mixture, then roll the dough up lengthwise & tuck in the ends before placing them in the prepared loaf pans.
- Cover pans with greased plastic wrap & let rise until doubled.
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F & bake for 10 minutes, then reduce heat to 350 degrees F & bake 50 minutes longer.
- Turn loaves out onto a wire rack to cool completely.
- If desired, the loaves can be served plain, dusted with powdered sugar or drizzled with a vanilla icing.
If you aren't successful baking bread, sweet breads with eggs, butter like this are totally different. I also made 1/2 quantity (2 eggs) in one loaf. I wanted to make a fruit loaf & use up 1 cup of rye flour I had left. I used what I had- sultanas, glace ginger, cherries and home made candied orange also flaked almonds and pecans. Next time I will try chopped dates, the raisins and macadamias instead of pecans and sultanas. Frangipane instead of sugar would also be nice. But think it would be delicious with most combinations- looking forward to trying the next day toasted.
If the last rise was in the fridge think the layers would have come out better as the butter would have time to solidify. Should sit once out of the oven for at least 5 minutes for the inside to steam and become less stodgy. Very easy using a bread machine to mix and knead. Watch the temperature mine got very brown even though I was watching and reducing the temperature.(fan forced ovens often need 10 degrees less.
I chose this recipe in part because it reminded me of one that my late mother used to make. I made only half the recipe, and then made two smaller loaves, as I wanted to share the bread with a friend. I am really contemplating not giving that loaf away! This is a lovely not too sweet bread, studded with nuggets of dried fruit. By cutting it in half I was able to use my bread machine for the prep. Mother would have used a package of mixed dried fruit, but I used a combination of apricots, pears, and dried berries. I cut them up about the size of my raisins - which were red crimson raising and larger than the regular raisins. I added the fruit and nuts towards the end of the cycle. What I really was curious about was the cinnamon sugar, as that is definitely not traditional - I've never had this bread that way. However, I have to say, that it's quite nice, not obtrusive, just a hint of flavor. I would add more eggs next time, as mother's bread was definitely more yellow - perhaps just add a few extra yolks. I baked my smaller loaves at 350 deg for about 40-45 minutes.