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Santa Lucia Crown

Feast day of St. Lucia or Lucy of Syracuse, Sicily, December 23

Ingredients

Batter

Powdered Sugar Glaze

Instructions

  1. Place 1/4 cup warm water in large warm bowl. Sprinkle in yeast; stir until dissolved.
  2. Add remaining water, warm milk, sugar, butter, salt, saffron, and 1 1/2 cups flour; blend well.
  3. Stir in 2 eggs and enough remaining flour to make soft dough. Knead on lightly floured surface until smooth and elastic, about 6 to 8 minutes.
  4. Place in greased bowl, turning to grease top. Cover; let rise in warm, draft-free place until doubled in size, about 1 hour.
  5. Punch dough down. Remove dough to lightly floured surface; reserve 1/3 of dough for top of crown.
  6. Divide remaining dough into 3 equal pieces; roll each to 25-inch rope. Braid ropes. Place braid on greased baking sheet. Form braid into circle; pinch ends together to seal. To shape top of crown, divide reserved dough into 3 equal pieces; roll each to 16-inch rope. Braid ropes. Place braid on separate greased baking sheet. Form braid into circle; pinch ends together to seal.
  7. over braids; let rise in warm, draft-free place until doubled in size, about 1 hour.
  8. Lightly beat remaining egg; brush on braids.
  9. Bake at 375 degrees F for 15 minutes or until done (small braid) and 25 minutes or until done (large braid), covering large braid with foil during last 10 minutes to prevent excess browning.
  10. Remove braids from baking sheets; let cool on wire racks.
  11. To decorate, make 6 holes for candles in small braid. Place small braid on top of large braid.
  12. If desired, drizzle with Powdered Sugar Glaze and garnish with candied cherry halves. Insert candles in prepared holes.
  13. Powdered Sugar Glaze: In small bowl, combine powdered sugar, sifted; milk and pure vanilla extract. Stir until smooth.

Yield: 1 crown

Nutritional Information Per Serving: Serving size: 1 slice (1/20 of recipe) - calories 159; total fat 4 g; saturated fat 2 g; cholesterol 39 mg; sodium 154 mg; total carbohydrate 27 g; dietary fiber 1 g; protein


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