This traditional Italian Christmas bread is suited for dessert, afternoon tea or breakfast. Enjoy!
In a medium bowl, combine yeast, water and sugar. Cover and let stand 10 minutes, or until foamy. Add eggs, yogurt, vanilla, lemon zest, and salt. Mix well. Stir in flour 1/2 cup at a time until dough forms into a manageable ball. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and knead for 5 to 10 minutes, adding flour as necessary, until dough is soft and pliable, but not sticky. (May need up to 5 cups flour.) Place dough in a large, lightly pan-sprayed bowl, cover, and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 hour.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) and spray a round 8-inch cake pan with non-stick spray. In a small bowl, toss dried fruit with confectioners' sugar. Punch down dough in bowl, transfer to floured surface, and knead in the fruit.
Form dough into a ball, place in prepared cake pan, cover loosely with dish towel, and let rise 30 minutes. (Loaf will rise above the pan sides.) Brush with melted butter, if desired. Bake for 45 minutes, or until loaf is golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Makes 10 wedges.
Per Serving: 210 calories; protein 6.3g; carbohydrates 40.7g; fat 2.3g; cholesterol 33.7mg; sodium 76.4mg.
The quality of the flour can make a real deal to your bread. Different brands do vary. Great taste or Canadian flours, which are naturally higher in gluten, may give you a better rise than standard bread flours – especially if you’re making wholemeal dough , which doesn’t always getting bigger as well as white bread.
To make this in a breadmaker , add all the menus to your breadmaker and follow the makers instructions.
A bread first rising can be done in the fridge overnight . This slows down the time it takes to rise to double its size, giving it a deeper flavour. It’s also a great limit , as you can start it yesterday , then clear it off the next day.