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Gift Christmas Kuchen


1 package active dry yeast
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup warm water (105f-to-115f)
3/4 cup butter, at room temperature
1 lemon, grated peel only (no whit
1 orange, grated peel only (no whi
1/2 tsp dried mace
1 1/2 tbsp ground coriander or anise seed
1 tsp salt
2 eggs, at room temperature
2 1/2 cup bread flour (or more)
3/4 cup warm milk (105f-to-115f)

If you want to give a friend a special holiday gift, put a bright
ribbon around this bread. When tightly wrapped, it freezes well for 1
to 2 months.

PREHEAT OVEN TO 350F. Dissolve yeast and 1 teaspoon sugar in warm
water. Beat 1/2 cup butter in food processor until light. Gradually
add remainder of sugar as you beat butter. Add lemon and orange
peels, mace, coriander and salt. Add yeast mixture. Add eggs, 1 at a
time, beating well after each addition, and then milk. Add enough
flour, 1/2 cup at a time, to make soft dough. Knead dough until
elastic and smooth. Place dough in oiled plastic bag or oiled bowl
and turn to coat. Seal or cover with plastic wrap and let rise at
room temperature until doubled, about 1 hour. Turn out dough on
floured surface, punch down and cut into 2 pieces. Shape each into
rectangular loaf and place on greased baking sheet. Melt remaining
1/4 cup butter and use to lightly brush tops of loaves.

TO PRESENT AS A GIFT: Make paper ribbon strips the width of your gift
ribbons and tie the bread loosely with the paper strips; secure with
paper clips, leaving enough room for the breads to rise. The paper
will leave marks for the position of the gift ribbons. Cover the
loaves with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place until doubled,
30-to-40 minutes. Bake loaves about 30-to-45 minutes. Remove and
place on a rack to cool. Remove the paper strips. Replace strips with
bright ribbons. Makes 2 Loaves


Servings: 2



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