Holiday Bread Tsoure’ki

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A Greek holiday bread.
This bread is mainly associated with the Easter holiday, probably due to it’s three rises which symbolize the Trinity.
I hope you try this and enjoy it!

Holiday Bread Tsoure’ki

Makes 4 small or 3 medium loaves:

Ingredients:

2-Envelopes dry granular yeast
1/2 Cup warm water
1/2 lb unsalted butter (softened)
1 1/4 Cups + 1 Tblsp Sugar
5- large eggs
2 – Cups warm milk
10 – Cups all-purpose unbleached flour

Directions:

1.> In a small bowl or large measuring cup, dissolve yeast in warm water with 1 Tbsp. of sugar. Allow at least 10 minutes to proof the yeast.
2.> In a mixer, beat butter and sugar until light and creamy.
3.> Beat in 4 eggs one at a time and allow batter to mix well.
4.> Slowly pour warm milk in, stirring constantly.
5.> Add 1 cup of flour and keep stirring to blend it in well.
6.> Add the dissolved and proofed yeast and mix well.
7.> Slowly add the remaining flour, while mixing, until the batter becomes a dough.
8.> Cover hands with flour and knead the dough until smooth. It should be pliable and not stiff.
9.> Cover dough in a bowl with a towel and let it rise until it has doubled. (1 hour)
10.> Knead the dough again for at least 1 minute. Cover and allow to rise a second time.
11.> Knead the dough again for at least 1 minute.
12.> Divide the dough into orange sized balls as follows:

12 balls = 4 small loaves
9 balls = 3 med. loaves

13.> Roll each ball on a board into a rope, 1 1/2″ – 2″ thick and 15″ – 20″ long.
14.> Braid 3 ropes together to make each loaf. Press the end firmly and tuck under the loaf.
15.> Set each loaf on a well butter baking sheet to rise, covered in a warm, draft-free place, until they double in bulk.

Bake:

Preheat oven to 275°F. Beat the last egg and brush the tops of the loaves. Bake for 15 minutes, then lower the heat to 250°F and bake another 30 minutes or until light golden brown. Cool and store in air tight bags. Bread can be frozen.

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