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Hearty Sweet Potato Braids

We make these delicious and nutritious loaves every Christmas. Thyme gives the pretty braids a lovely flavor. For a change, I often use safflower oil in this recipe. –Suzanne Kesel of Cohocton, New York
  • Total Time
    Prep: 45 min. + rising Bake: 30 min.
  • Makes
    2 loaves (12 slices each)

Ingredients

  • 1 package (1/4 ounce) active dry yeast
  • 1/4 cup warm water (110° to 115°)
  • 1-1/2 cups mashed sweet potatoes, room temperature
  • 1 cup warm fat-free milk (110° to 115°)
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 3 tablespoons honey
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup yellow cornmeal
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 2-3/4 to 3-1/4 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 tablespoon cold fat-free milk

Directions

  • In a large bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water. Add the sweet potatoes, milk, oil, honey, all-purpose flour, cornmeal, salt, thyme and 2 cups whole wheat flour; beat until smooth. Stir in enough remaining whole wheat flour to form a firm dough.
  • Turn onto a lightly floured surface. Knead until smooth and elastic, about 6-8 minutes. Place in a bowl coated with cooking spray; turn once to coat top. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 hour.
  • Punch dough down; divide into six equal portions. Shape each into a 20-in. rope. Place three ropes on a baking sheet coated with cooking spray; braid. Pinch ends to seal and tuck under. Repeat with remaining ropes. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 35 minutes.
  • Brush loaves with cold milk. Bake at 350° for 30-35 minutes or until golden brown. Remove to wire racks.
Nutrition Facts
1 slice: 131 calories, 3g fat (0 saturated fat), 0 cholesterol, 206mg sodium, 24g carbohydrate (5g sugars, 3g fiber), 3g protein.
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