Prep 3 hrs
Cook 1 hr 30 mins
This recipe has been in my husband's Norweigan side of the family for generations. It was passed on from his great grandmother to his grandmother and so on. I noticed two recipes already posted in Recipezaar (julekake), but this one is prepared a bit different. It's a very dry fruit bread. Definitely used for dunking in your coffee or slathered with butter. I am not a big fan of it, but I make it at Christmastime for my husband as he adores it.
- 1 (1 3/4 ounce) jar ground cardamom (fine powder, use 1/4 of the jar for this 2-loaf recipe)
- 1 cup chopped citron
- 1 1⁄2 cups golden raisins
- 1 1⁄2 cups regular raisins
- 5 cups boiling water (approximately)
- 2 (1/4 ounce) packageseach dry yeast
- 1⁄2 cup warm water
- 2 cups scalded 2% low-fat milk or 2 cups whole milk
- 3⁄4 cup salted butter
- 3⁄4 cup granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 beaten eggs
- 8 cups flour
- 1 beaten egg, used to brush on top loaves before baking
- 2 tablespoons melted butter, to brush on top loaves after baking is complete
- in a heatproof bowl, put all raisins together and cover with approximately 5 cups of boiling water to soften. set aside.
- mix the 2 packages of dry yeast with 1/2 cup of warm water. mix well and let sit.
- boil 2 cups of milk until scalded. turn down heat to medium and add the 3/4 cup of butter until melted. remove from heat and set aside.
- in a large bowl measure 3/4 cup granulated sugar, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 of the container of cardamom. mix well.
- add the two beaten eggs to the dry mixture. then add the milk/butter mixture. gradually add 6 of the 8 cups of flour and the dissolved yeast.
- drain the raisins. add the raisins and citron to the mix. now add the remaining 2 cups of flour.
- time to knead the bread! i use my heavy-duty mixer as it is easier on my hands and back. if manual knead, place dough on floured breadboard and knead completely.
- once the bread is kneaded, place into a large pre-floured bowl and cover with a dish towel or cloth allowing it to rise for 1 hour.
- after the dough has risen, cut it into two loaves. place each into a pre-greased, pre-floured baking loaf pan.
- again, cover each loaf pan and allow to rise for another hour.
- before placing the loaves into a pre-heated 300 degree oven, cut the top of each loaf with an X design, or a fancy cut design of your choice, and brush with 1 beaten egg.
- bake the loaves for 45 minutes at 300 degrees. increase the heat to 325 degrees for the next 30-45 minutes (test after 30 minutes with a toothpick for doneness - make take longer, make take less depending on your oven temperature).
- remove the loaves from the oven and brush with 2 tablespoons of melted butter.
- let loaves cool completely before removing from pans.
- note: if you choose to omit the citron, which i do often, use 2 cups each of the golden and regular raisins instead.