This is another one of my favorite breads for Easter time. You must put the egg wash over the bread before baking, however, or the colored eggs will run - and that will put you in a bad mood (like it did me), and you won't want to make it again until someone talks you into it. It is a delicious bread, though, and fun for the kids.
- 6 to 6-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 2 packages (1/4 ounce each) active dry yeast
- 1 to 2 teaspoons ground cardamom
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1-1/2 cups milk
- 6 tablespoons butter, cubed
- 4 eggs
- 3 to 6 hard-cooked eggs
- Vegetable oil
- 2 tablespoons cold water
- In a large bowl, combine 2 cups flour, sugar, yeast, cardamom and salt. In a saucepan, heat milk and butter to 120°-130°. Add to dry ingredients; beat just until moistened. Add 3 eggs; beat until smooth. Stir in enough remaining flour to form a soft dough.
- Turn onto a floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, about 6-8 minutes. Place in a greased bowl, turning once to grease top. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 45 minutes.
- Dye hard-cooked eggs; lightly rub with oil. Punch dough down. Turn onto a lightly floured surface; divide dough into thirds. Shape each portion into a 24-in. rope.
- Place ropes on a greased baking sheet and braid; bring ends together to form a ring. Pinch ends to seal. Gently separate braided ropes and tuck dyed eggs into openings. Cover and let rise until doubled, about 20 minutes.
- Beat water and remaining egg; gently brush over dough. Bake at 375° for 28-32 or until golden brown. Remove from pan to a wire rack to cool. Refrigerate leftovers. Yield: 1 loaf.
Nutrition Facts: 1 serving (1 slice) equals 281 calories, 8 g fat (4 g saturated fat), 107 mg cholesterol, 231 mg sodium, 44 g carbohydrate, 1 g fiber, 9 g protein.