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Adapted from Betty Crocker's International Cookbook. We had something similar at a wonderful local Swiss restaurant.
- 1 package yeast
- 3 tablespoon honey
- ½ cup warm water
- ¾ cup scalded milk
- ¼ cup granulated sugar
- ⅓ cup margarine
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 4¼ - 4¾ cups flour, divided
- 2 eggs
- ¼ teaspoon mace
- ½ cup golden raisins
- ½ cup sliced almonds
- Mix the honey and warm water to dissolve, add yeast.
- In a small saucepan, heat the milk almost to boiling point, then remove from heat.
- Combine the scalded milk, Sugar, margarine, and salt; cool to lukewarm.
- Stir 1 cup of flour into milk mixture, beat well.
- Stir in the yeast mixture.
- Add eggs and beat well.
- Add mace, raisins, and almonds.
- Add 3 more cups of flour, stirring to make a soft dough.
- Turn the dough onto a well-floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic, adding flour a little at a time to keep dough from sticking.
- Place the dough in a lightly greased bowl, turning the dough once to grease all sides.
- Cover and let rise in a warm place until dough is double in size (about 1 hour).
- Punch down dough and divide into 5 pieces, 3 the same size, 2 slightly smaller.
- The 3 larger pieces are rolled out to form a 17-inch roll and then braided together. This is the bottom row.
- The 2 smaller pieces are rolled out and twisted together and placed on top of the 3-braid piece, tucking the ends under.
- Assemble on a cookie sheet with parchment paper on the diagonal.
- Let the Houska rise in a warm place until about double in size.
- Rush the tops with milk.
- Bake in a 350 °F oven for 30 minutes or until golden brown.
- Brush the tops lightly with butter when the loaves are still warm for a softer crust.