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Pocono Christmas Fruit Bread

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Pocono Christmas Fruit Bread

Pocono Christmas Fruit Bread

Photo © Elizabeth Yetter

Folks in the Poconos are a hardy people. They endure freezing cold winters, poor roadways, and many of them are outdoors people. They work hard, and it's only natural that they should have their own hardy Pocono Christmas fruit bread.

Yield: 1 loaf

Prep Time: 2 hours

Cook Time: 25 minutes

Total Time: 2 hours, 25 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 2-1/4 tsp or 1 pkg (1/4 oz.) active dry yeast
  • 1/2 cup plus 1 Tbsp warm water, 95 to 110 degrees F, divided
  • 1/2 cup milk, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup candied cherries, chopped
  • 1/4 cup candied mixed peel
  • 1/4 cup almond slices
  • 2 Tbsp sugar, divided
  • 1 Tbsp butter, soft
  • 1/4 tsp cloves
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 3-1/2 cups bread flour, about
  • Egg yolk

Preparation:

  1. In large bowl, add yeast and 1/2 cup warm water. Stir until yeast is dissolved. Add milk, candied cherries, candied mixed peel, almond slices, 1 Tbsp sugar, butter, cloves, cinnamon, and salt. Stir. Mix in 3 cups flour. Add enough of the remaining flour to make a thick dough that can be kneaded.

  2. Turn dough out onto lightly floured board. Knead for 8 minutes. Put dough into medium, greased bowl. Flip dough over inside bowl so that the dough top is also lightly greased. Cover bowl with clean dishtowel and let rise in warm, draft-free place for 1 hour or until dough is double in bulk.

  3. Punch down dough. Turn out onto lightly floured board and knead for 5 minutes. Divide dough into 3 equal parts. Shape each piece into a round rolls. Place round rolls in a line so that they are slightly touching onto a greased baking sheet. Cover with clean dishtowel and let rise in a warm, draft-free place for 45 minutes or until double in size.

  4. In small bowl, lightly beat the egg yolk (the yellow), 1 Tbsp sugar, and 1 Tbsp water together. Brush glaze on loaf. Bake at 375 degrees F for 25 minutes. Let bread cool on rack.
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