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Becky Luigart-Stayner Photo by: Becky Luigart-Stayner

Greek Easter Bread

Add this sweet, spiced homemade bread to your must-bake Easter recipes. It's beautiful, delicious, and large enough to feed a crowd.

Cooking Light MARCH 2005

  • Yield: 20 servings (serving size: 1 slice)

Ingredients

  • 1 teaspoon whole allspice
  • 1 (3-inch) cinnamon stick
  • 1 cup warm water (100° to 110°)
  • Dash of salt
  • Dash of sugar
  • 2 packages dry yeast (about 2 1/4 teaspoons each)
  • 4 3/4 cups bread flour, divided
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Cooking spray
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 1 large egg yolk

Preparation

Place allspice and cinnamon in a spice or coffee grinder, and process until finely ground. Set aside.

Combine water, dash of salt, dash of sugar, and yeast in a large bowl, stirring with a whisk. Let stand for 5 minutes. Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Add 1 cup flour to yeast mixture, stirring until well combined. Let stand 20 minutes.

Place sugar and butter in a large bowl; beat with a mixer at medium speed until light and fluffy. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Stir in allspice mixture. Add yeast mixture to butter mixture; stir with a whisk until well combined. Stir in 1 teaspoon salt. Add 3 1/2 cups flour, about 1 cup at a time, stirring until a soft dough forms. Turn dough out onto a floured surface. Knead until smooth and elastic (about 8 minutes); add enough of remaining flour, 1 tablespoon at a time, to prevent dough from sticking to hands (dough will feel tacky).

Place dough in a large bowl coated with cooking spray, turning to coat top. Cover and let rise in a warm place (85°), free from drafts, 1 hour or until doubled in size. (Gently press 2 fingers into dough. If indentation remains, dough has risen enough.)

Divide dough into 3 equal portions, shaping each portion into a 14-inch-long rope. Place ropes lengthwise on a baking sheet coated with cooking spray (do not stretch); pinch ends together at one end to seal. Braid ropes; pinch loose ends to seal. Lightly coat dough with cooking spray. Cover and let rise 45 minutes or until doubled in size.

Preheat oven to 350°.

Combine 1 tablespoon water and egg yolk, stirring with a whisk. Brush half of yolk mixture over loaf. Let stand for 5 minutes. Repeat procedure with the remaining yolk mixture. Bake at 350° for 30 minutes or until loaf sounds hollow when tapped. Cool on a wire rack for 20 minutes.

Note:

Use leftovers to make French toast.

Nutritional Information

Amount per serving
  • Calories: 168
  • Calories from fat: 18%
  • Fat: 3.3g
  • Saturated fat: 1.5g
  • Monounsaturated fat: 0.9g
  • Polyunsaturated fat: 0.4g
  • Protein: 5.3g
  • Carbohydrate: 29.1g
  • Fiber: 1.1g
  • Cholesterol: 47mg
  • Iron: 1.8mg
  • Sodium: 150mg
  • Calcium: 13mg
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Greek Easter Bread recipe

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