EASTER EGG BREAD
2 1/2 C flour
1/4 C sugar or honey
1 t salt
2 1/4 t yeast (or one packet)
2/3 C milk
2 T butter
5 whole raw eggs, dyed if desired
2 T melted butter
In a large bowl combine 1 C flour, sugar/honey, salt and yeast. Stir well and set aside.
Combine milk and butter in a small saucepan and heat until milk is warm and butter is softened but not completely melted.
Gradually add milk mixture into flour mixture stirring constantly. Add 2 eggs and 1/2 C flour. Mix well. Add remaining flour a half cup at a time mixing well in between each one. Add a little more flour and knead in the bowl until smooth and elastic, about 5-8 minutes.
Let rise in a warm place covered or in a 100 degree oven for 1 hour.
Deflate dough and divide it into 2 equal size rounds by pinching the middle of it.
Let rise another 10 minutes on the clean counter.
Roll each round into a long roll about 3 feet long and 1 1/2 inch thick. I pinched and pulled, pinched and pulled. If it breaks, just knead it back together.
Using the two long pieces of dough, form a loosely braided ring by twisting them. Seal end of ring together and use your fingers to slide the eggs between the braids of dough.
Place loaf on buttered baking sheet or a pizza stone. Cover loosely and place in warm area or uncovered in a 100 degree oven to rise for approx 45 minutes.
Brush risen loaf with melted butter.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees and cook for 40-55 minutes or until golden. Now watch it closer than I did. I left mine in too long.
The eggs cook right along with the bread in the shell. When served, the person takes the egg out of the bread and peels it before eating. This bread with the eggs needs to be stored in the refrigerator and should not be left sitting out for more than 2 hours because of the hard cooked eggs.