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Norwegian Christmas Bread Recipe

When my husband became a minister for a church in an area populated with Norwegians, my father-in-law was delighted because I had easy access to recipes he enjoyed as a child. This is a traditional Christmas bread, but I make it for any holiday we get together. —Deborah Petersen, Princeton, New Jersey
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 25 min. + rising Bake: 30 min. YIELD:24 servings

Ingredients

  • 1 package (1/4 ounce) active dry yeast
  • 1 cup warm water (110° to 115°)
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 cup butter, softened
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 3-3/4 to 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • 1/2 cup diced citron or mixed candied fruit

Directions

  • 1. In a bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water. Add sugar, egg, butter, salt, cardamom and 2 cups flour; mix well. Stir in raisins, citron and enough remaining flour to form a soft dough.
  • 2. Turn onto a floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, about 6-8 minutes. Place in a greased bowl, turning once to greased top. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 hour.
  • 3. Punch dough down; divide in half. Shape each portion into a flattened ball. Place in two greased 9-in. round baking pans. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 hour.
  • 4. Bake at 350° for 30-35 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from pans to cool on wire racks. Yield: 2 loaves.

Nutritional Facts

1 serving (1 slice) equals 132 calories, 2 g fat (1 g saturated fat), 14 mg cholesterol, 86 mg sodium, 25 g carbohydrate, 1 g fiber, 3 g protein.