Bread of the Dead

Yield: Makes 1 loaf, about 2 pounds
Recipe from Sunset

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Nutritional Information

Amount per serving
  • Calories: 96
  • Calories from fat: 27%
  • Protein: 2.4g
  • Fat: 2.9g
  • Saturated fat: 1.4g
  • Carbohydrate: 15g
  • Fiber: 0.5g
  • Sodium: 61mg
  • Cholesterol: 25mg

Ingredients

  • 1 package active dry yeast
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • 1/3 cup (1/6 lb.) butter or margarine, cut into small pieces
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla
  • About 3 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 2 tablespoons sesame seed

Preparation

  1. 1. In a large bowl, sprinkle yeast over 1/4 cup warm (110°) water; let stand about 5 minutes.
  2. 2. Heat milk and butter to 110°. Add milk mixture, sugar, and salt to softened yeast.
  3. 3. Lightly beat eggs to blend. Spoon 1 tablespoon of the eggs into a small bowl, cover, and chill. Add remaining eggs and vanilla to yeast mixture; stir to blend. Add 2 1/4 cups flour, nutmeg, and cinnamon; stir to moisten, then beat with a mixer on high speed until dough is stretchy, 6 to 8 minutes. Stir in 1 cup flour to moisten.
  4. 4. Knead dough. If using a dough hook, beat on high speed until dough pulls cleanly from bowl and no longer feels sticky, about 5 minutes. If dough is still sticky, beat in more flour, 1 tablespoon at a time.
  5. If kneading by hand, scrape dough onto a well-floured board. Knead until dough is smooth, elastic, and no longer sticky, about 12 minutes; add flour as required to prevent sticking. Return dough to bowl.
  6. 5. Cover bowl airtight and let dough rise in a warm, draft-free place until it doubles, about 1 1/2 hours.
  7. 6. Punch dough down. Knead on a lightly floured board to expel air. Form into a 7-inch round and set on a buttered 12- by 15-inch baking sheet. Cover lightly with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place until puffy, about 40 minutes.
  8. 7. Uncover dough and brush gently with reserved beaten egg. Sprinkle loaf with sesame seed. With a sharp, floured knife, make a slash about 1/2 inch deep across the middle of the loaf.
  9. 8. Bake loaf in a 350° oven until richly browned, 35 to 40 minutes. Serve warm or cool. If making ahead, wrap cool loaf airtight and let stand at room temperature up to 1 day; freeze to store longer.
  10. 9. If desired, cut a slit in the bread and insert a Day of the Dead decoration such as a miniature skull or skeleton.
  11. Nutritional analysis per ounce.
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