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Easter Bread with Orange Butter

This is a very old recipe I found in my great-aunt's handwritten cookbook after she passed away. I love it with apple butter or orange butter, made by mixing orange marmalade and butter. —Sandi Pichon, Slidell, Louisiana
  • Total Time
    Prep: 35 min. + rising Bake: 25 min. + cooling
  • Makes
    1 loaf (32 slices)


  • 1 envelope (1/4 ounce) active dry yeast
  • 3/4 cup warm water (110° to 115°)
  • 3 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 teaspoons grated lemon zest
  • 4 to 5 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • 2 teaspoons butter, melted
  • 3/4 cup butter, softened
  • 3 tablespoons orange marmalade


  • In a large bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water. Add the eggs, sugar, oil, salt, lemon zest and 2 cups flour. Beat until smooth. Stir in enough remaining flour to form a soft dough.
  • Turn onto a floured surface. Sprinkle with raisins; knead until smooth and elastic, about 6-8 minutes. Place in a greased bowl, turning once to grease the top. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 hour.
  • Punch dough down. Turn onto a lightly floured surface; divide dough into thirds. Shape each into a 20-in. rope. Place ropes on a greased baking sheet and braid; pinch ends to seal and tuck under. Cover and let rise until doubled, about 1 hour.
  • Bake at 350° for 24-28 minutes or until golden brown. Brush with melted butter. Remove from pan to a wire rack to cool. In a small bowl, combine softened butter and marmalade; serve with bread.
Nutrition Facts
1 slice: 135 calories, 7g fat (3g saturated fat), 32mg cholesterol, 188mg sodium, 16g carbohydrate (4g sugars, 1g fiber), 2g protein.

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