When I think of Easter, I think about my Italian neighbors from my hometown in the Midwest. Lucy, my mother’s best friend and a great gardener and cook, baked Easter Bread every year. In my neighborhood, there were also families with ancestry from Germany, Scandinavia and Europe, and all of them had their own version of this holiday bread. Some of them braided and added raisins or other dried fruit; some formed it in a ring and decorated with eggs; and others stuffed with savory fillings.
So, dust off your bread machine and give this basic recipe a try or give it your own twist. I chose to make a bigger ring and fill it with herbs from my garden, but you can choose to make a few smaller ones to give away.
It’s best eaten the same day, so make your dough Saturday evening and let it rise overnight. The fresh-baked bread will welcome your guests on Easter Sunday.
Preheat oven to 340 degrees
1/4 cup of lukewarm water (110 degrees)
2/3 cup milk (110 degrees)
3/4 of softened butter (not melted)
2/3 cup granulated sugar
juice of one lemon
2 eggs, beaten
5 cups of unbleached flour
2 1/4 teaspoons of yeast
colored raw egg
Add ingredients in order given above to bread machine. Process for dough cycle. Roll and shape into braided rings. Let rise. Bake at 340 degrees for apporoximately 20-25 minutes. This bread can also have colored raw eggs put in the braids before baking. They will cook to hard boiled egg stage. After baking, cool and frost with 2 cups powered sugar mixed with apporximately 1/4 cup milk and 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract, then sprinkle with non-pareils.Share on Facebook