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Italian Easter Bread



  • 3 packages dry yeast
  • 1 cup warm water
  • 6 large eggs, beaten
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons lemon extract
  • 2 tablespoons orange extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon anise oil or 1/2 bottle anise extract
  • 1 cup scalded milk
  • 1/2 pound (2 sticks) melted margarine (do not use a spread)
  • 10 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 egg yolk, for glaze


  1. Dissolve yeast in warm water.
  2. Melt margarine; let cool for about 5 minutes.
  3. Beat 6 eggs until lemon colored and thick, then add sugar. Add remaining ingredients, including margarine. Add yeast mixture and about 5 cups flour. Add remaining flour gradually to make a soft dough (dough shouldn't be sticky). Knead until smooth.
  4. Place in a greased bowl, cover and let rise until doubled in size, about 1 hour. Punch down; raise a second time, until doubled. Divide dough into 6 pieces. Mold dough into desired shapes.
  5. Bake at 350 degrees F until golden brown.
  6. Slightly beat 1 egg yolk with 1 tablespoon of water; brush hot loaves with the egg mixture.

Yield: 4 servings

Note: We cut kneading time in half by using an electric mixer with a bread hook. And we also cut the recipe in half with no trouble.

Source: Recipe by Marguerita V. Glaser - from Pittsburgh Post-Gazette Thursday, April 20, 2000

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