- 1 cake yeast
- 1 cup warm water, divided
- 1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon sugar, divided
- 2 cups milk, brought to a boil
- 1/4 pound butter (1 stick)
- 8 cups flour
- 2 tablespoons salt
- 3 eggs
- 1 cake yeast
- 1/2 cup warm milk
- 1 cup plus 1 tablespoon sugar, divided
- 1 pound dry cottage cheese
- 1 cup yellow raisins
- 4 egg yolks
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon lemon zest
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 3 cups sifted flour
- To make basic dough, crumble yeast in 1/2 cup water with 1 tablespoon sugar. Set aside for 5 minutes.
- Pour boiling milk over butter, remaining sugar and remaining water. Cool to lukewarm.
- Sift flour into bowl; add salt, eggs, milk mixture and yeast mixture. Knead dough until smooth and elastic. Cover and let rise until doubled in bulk, about 2 hours, in warm place.
- To make cheese dough, crumble yeast in warm milk to which 1 tablespoon sugar has been added; let stand for 5 minutes.
- Mix cottage cheese with spoon until smooth. Add yellow raisins and yeast mixture. Add unbeaten egg yolks, remaining sugar, salt, lemon zest, baking powder and flour; knead well. Set aside to rise until doubled in bulk, about 2 hours.
- When basic dough has doubled in size, turn out onto lightly floured board and divide into 4 parts (1 part is for decorating, the remaining 3 are for the 3 loaves). Shape 3 parts into rounds. Let basic dough rounds stand on board, covered, for 15 minutes.
- Take 1 part of basic dough on board; lightly punch around edge to elevate center.
- Divide cheese dough into thirds. Roll out 1 part of cheese dough into long log and place it around elevated edge of basic dough; lightly make opening in center of basic dough. Join edges of basic dough; press carefully so cheese dough is completely covered.
- Place dough in pan and let rise for 30 to 45 minutes. (Round pans or stainless steel bowls are typically used here.) Repeat for remaining 2 rounds of basic dough and remaining 2 parts of cheese dough.
- Preheat oven to 325 F.
- Use 4th part of basic dough to make braids, crosses, etc., and attach with egg yolk.
- Brush top with egg yolk before placing in oven. Bake for 10 minutes. Increase oven temperature to 350 F and continue baking for an additional 40 minutes.
Yields 3 loaves
Lois Severson, Marlton, New Jersey, remembers her grandmother baking an Easter Bread that contained raisins and had a thick ribbon of cottage cheese down the middle of the loaf. The cheese ribbon baked into a golden treat that tasted wonderful, she says.
Toni Muller, Monticello, Iowa, sends this recipe from a church cookbook published in Livonia, Michigan.
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