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Julekage (Danish Christmas Fruit Loaf)

Photo: Becky Luigart-Stayner
Yield 1 loaf, 16 servings (serving size: 1 slice)
Typically baked with candied citrus rind and either spiced apples or dried fruit (our choice), this rich Scandinavian sweet bread is then crowned with a sweet, snowy-white glaze.

Ingredients

  • Dough:
  • 4 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, divided
  • 3 tablespoons granulated sugar, divided
  • 1/3 cup chopped almonds
  • 1/3 cup raisins
  • 1/4 cup nonfat dry milk
  • 2 tablespoons chopped candied citron
  • 2 tablespoons chopped candied lemon peel
  • 2 tablespoons chopped candied orange peel
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon grated lemon rind
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1 package dry yeast (about 2 1/4 teaspoons)
  • 1/2 cup warm water (100° to 110°)
  • 6 tablespoons butter or stick margarine, softened
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • Cooking spray
  • 1 tablespoon fat-free milk
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tablespoon turbinado or granulated sugar
  • Glaze:
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 2 teaspoons water
  • 1/4 teaspoon almond extract

Nutrition Information

  • calories 234
  • caloriesfromfat 26 %
  • fat 6.7 g
  • satfat 1.3 g
  • monofat 3 g
  • polyfat 1.8 g
  • protein 5.9 g
  • carbohydrate 37.6 g
  • fiber 1.4 g
  • cholesterol 42 mg
  • iron 1.9 mg
  • sodium 249 mg
  • calcium 47 mg

How to Make It

  1. To prepare dough, lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups, and level with a knife. Combine 4 cups flour, 2 tablespoons granulated sugar, almonds, and the next 8 ingredients (almonds through cardamom) in a bowl.

  2. Dissolve 1 tablespoon of granulated sugar and yeast in warm water in a large bowl; let stand 5 minutes. Stir in butter, vanilla, and 2 beaten eggs until well-blended. Gradually add flour mixture; stir to combine. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Knead until smooth and elastic (about 8 minutes); add enough remaining flour, 1 tablespoon at a time, to prevent dough from sticking to hands.

  3. 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 and 45 minutes. Dough will not double in size.(Press two fingers into dough. If indentation remains, the dough has risen enough.)

  4. Punch dough down; let rest 5 minutes. Roll into an 11 x 9-inch rectangle on a lightly floured surface. Roll up rectangle tightly, starting with a short edge, pressing firmly to eliminate air pockets; pinch seam and ends to seal. Place, seam side down, in a 9 x 5-inch loaf pan coated with cooking spray. Cover and let rise 1 hour and 30 minutes.

  5. Preheat oven to 375°.

  6. Uncover the dough. Combine fat-free milk, 1/8 teaspoon salt, and 1 egg; brush lightly over loaf. Sprinkle with turbinado sugar. Bake at 375° for 45 minutes or until loaf sounds hollow when tapped. Remove from pan; cool on a wire rack.

  7. To prepare glaze, combine the powdered sugar, water, and almond extract in a small bowl. Drizzle over loaf.