Catholic Recipe: Christmas Braid
This bread is actually two braids, the smaller one set on top of the larger braid. The Basic Sweet Dough recipe is used for this lovely braid.
Use 1/2 of Basic Sweet Dough (see recipe). Let rise twice. Knead in 1 teaspoon grated lemon peel, 1/8 teaspoon mace, 1/2 cup seedless raisins, 1/2 cup chopped blanched almonds. Divide dough into 4 equal parts. Shape 3 of the parts into strands each 14 inches long. Place about 1 inch apart on lightly greased baking sheet. Braid loosely, beginning at middle, working toward either end. Do not stretch. Seal ends by pressing firmly together and tucking under. Divide remaining portion of dough into 3 equal parts; shape into 3 strands each 12 inches long. Make another braid, and place on top of the large braid, pinching ends into large braid. Cover; let rise until double in bulk 45 to 60 minutes. Bake at 350° F for 30 to 40 minutes. Frost if desired.Recipe Source: Cook's Blessings, The by Demetria Taylor, Random House, New York, 1965