It's Good Friday, and I've been busy preparing for our Easter feast! This year I'm cooking Lasagna, with a big pot of sauce, meatballs, a baked ham, and a most delicious salad. And for dessert my Ricotta Rice Pie, along with some other delicious goodies.
I love traditions, and baking Easter Bread is one of them. I started baking this bread the first year my baby girl, Becca was born. We always had traditions while growing up, and I want my children to learn to love them as well. This bread is so easy, and if you have a Kitchen Aid Mixer, it's even easier! Make this Easter Bread, have a piece toasted with butter for your Easter "Resurrection Day" breakfast, you and your family will love it!
Have a most blessed and wonderful Easter!
1 cup warm milk (105 - 115)
1 pkg active dry yeast
2 TBS Sugar
Heat the milk to 105 - 110 degrees, Let the milk cool or if it's too hot it will kill the yeast. In a large bowl add the yeast, milk and 2 TBS sugar, mix with a fork, and let the yeast get all bubbly.
In your Kitchen Aid mixer, or a big bowl, add the following ingredients:
5 cups flour
1 cup butter melted COOLED butter
1/2 cup sugar
2 tsp grated Lemon Zest
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp. almond extract
Using the dough hook, or your hands, give it a whirl, then add the milk- yeast mixture. Turn on the mixer and let the dough hook knead the dough, then add another cup of flour, continue kneading, what does the dough look like? If it looks like a cake batter, you need to add another cup of flour, until all the dough is wrap around the dough hook. If it's too dry, just add about 2 TBS water.
|Dough wrapped around the dough hook|
|All risen, ready to shape into braids!|
When it's done rising, punch it down turn it out onto a floured board. You can make 2 loaves of bread with this recipe. Divide the dough in half, then divide each into thirds, roll out each piece into a long rope, you are going to start braiding. Bread the dough, and then pinch the ends together making a circle. Place the dyed eggs into the bread, right before it goes for it's 2nd rise.