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Frosted Caramel Nut Braid

 Frosted Caramel Nut Braid
It's become a Christmas-morning tradition for my husband, me and our two young children to much on this scrumptious bread with its nutty filling while opening gifts. Since I make it ahead, I can also relax and enjoy the festivities.
10 ServingsPrep: 30 min. + rising Bake: 25 min.

Ingredients

  • 1 package (1/4 ounce) active dry yeast
  • 1/4 cup warm water (110° to 115°)
  • 1 cup warm milk (110° to 115°)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup butter, softened
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 4-1/4 to 4-3/4 cups King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
  • CARAMEL FILLING:
  • 1 cup chopped pecans
  • 2/3 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup butter, softened
  • 2 tablespoons King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
  • FROSTING:
  • 1/3 cup butter, softened
  • 2 cups confectioners' sugar
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 3 to 4 teaspoons water
  • 1/4 cup chopped pecans

Directions

  • In a bowl, dissolve yeast in water. Add milk, eggs, sugar, butter,
  • salt and 2 cups four; beat until smooth. Add enough remaining flour

2 of 2

Frosted Caramel Nut Braid (continued)

Directions (continued)

  • to form a soft but sticky dough. Do not knead. Cover and let rise in
  • a warm place until doubled, about 1-1/2 hours. Beat 25 strokes with
  • a spoon; turn onto a well-floured surface. Roll into a 16-in. x
  • 12-in. rectangle. Combine filling ingredients with a fork; spread
  • evenly over the dough. Cut dough lengthwise into three strips. Roll
  • up jelly-roll style, beginning at a long end; pinch edges and ends
  • to seal. Place three rolls diagonally, seam side down, on a
  • foil-lined 15-in. x 10-in. x 1-in. baking pan. Braid ropes together
  • gently (do not stretch); seal ends. Cover and let rise until
  • doubled, about 1 hour. Bake at 350° for 25-30 minutes or until
  • golden brown. Remove from pan and cool slightly on wire rack. For
  • frosting, heat butter in a saucepan over low heat until golden
  • brown; cool slightly. Stir in sugar and vanilla. Stir in enough
  • water to make a spreadable consistency. Frost top of braid;
  • immediately sprinkle with pecans. Yield: 1 loaf.
Nutritional Facts: 1 serving (1 slice) equals 650 calories, 30 g fat (12 g saturated fat), 91 mg cholesterol, 556 mg sodium, 89 g carbohydrate, 3 g fiber, 10 g protein.