Scald milk; let cool to lukewarm (105° to 115°). Dissolve yeast and 1 tablespoon sugar in warm milk in a large mixing bowl; stirring well. Let stand 5 minutes or until bubbly.
Add 1 cup flour, beating until smooth. Cover and let rise in a warm place (85°), free from drafts, 45 minutes or until doubled in bulk.
Cream butter in a large mixing bowl; gradually add 1/3 cup sugar, beating well.
Beat egg white (at room temperature) until stiff peaks form. Stir egg white, pecans, salt, yeast mixture, and remaining flour into creamed mixture to make a soft dough.
Turn dough out onto a floured surface. Knead 8 minutes or until smooth and elastic. Place dough in a greased bowl, turning to grease top. Cover and repeat rising procedure 1 1/2 hours or until doubled in bulk.
Punch dough down; turn out onto a lightly floured surface, and shape into a loaf. Place in a well-greased 9- x 5- x 3-inch loaf pan. Cover and repeat rising procedure 1 hour or until doubled in bulk.
Bake at 325° for 15 minutes; increase temperature to 350°, and bake an additional 30 minutes or until loaf sounds hollow when tapped. Remove bread from pan immediately, and cool on a wire rack. Slice loaf, and serve with cream cheese, if desired.