Kerstbrood Christmas Bread) (recipe)

Ingredients for 
2 packagedry yeast
1/2 cupwater warm
3/4 cupmilk room temperature
1/2 cupsugar granulated
1/2 teaspoonsalt
1/2 cupbutter unsalted, softened
3 largeEggs; Lightly Beaten; (1 Egg White in Reserve)
1 cupCurrants or Raisins; Or a Mixture of Both
1/2 cupCitron; Diced
1/2 cupOrange Peel or Candied Fruit; Diced
4 1/2 cupall-purpose flour
3/4 cupBlanched Almonds; Chopped
2 teaspooncinnamon
1/2 cupsugar powdered

recipe preparation

It just wouldnÂ’t be Christmas in The Netherlands if there wasnÂ’t some Christmas Bread served at each festive gathering. Krestbrood is a morning, noon and night bread. Just dust the portion being served with powdered sugar, slice and serve. You'll have a hearty sample of one of the best Dutch Treats ever made.

In a large mixing bowl stir yeast into warm water and dissolve. Add the milk, sugar, salt, butter and 2 whole eggs plus the yolk from a third egg and blend well.

In a separate bowl, dust the raisins, currants, citron and orange peel or candied fruit with a little flour and cinnamon. Add the almonds to the fruit mixture.

Add half of the flour to the yeast mixture and stir until smooth. Cover and let raise in a warm place until doubled, at least 1-hour. Add the remaining flour and kneed the dough until smooth and elastic, approximately 5-minutes. Knead in the fruits and almonds. Place dough in an oiled bowl, turning the dough so it is completely coated and covered. Let dough raise for about 30-minutes.

Divide the dough into two equal portions and press each ball into a large, flat circle. Fold each circle over so the top half is 1-inch from the edge of the bottom half, forming a split-loaf shape.

Place loaves on a greased baking sheet and cover with plastic wrap. Let raise again until doubled in size, approximately 30-minutes. Bake in a pre-heated 357-F degree oven for 40-minutes, until golden brown. Cool on a wire rack and sprinkle the top generously with powdered sugar before serving sliced.

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From The Cook & Kitchen Staff at by The Cook

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