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Old 10-31-2005, 10:29 AM   #1
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Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: USA, Oklahoma
Posts: 3,463
Pan de Muerto -- Bread of the Dead

I thought would be fitting for today. I haven't made it yet, but one of these days, I'd like to.

Pan de Muerto
Bread of the Dead

Traditional Mexican recipe for Oct 31, Souls Day.

2 c all purpose flower (222 g), in all
2 c water
1 c white sugar (300 g), in all
c of margarine or butter (125 g)
1/3 c shortening (100 g)
3 whole eggs, in all
7 egg yolks
3 T orange blossom water
2 T anise tea
20 g dry yeast
1 T orange rind
t salt

Dissolve the yeast in 8 T of room temperature water and add about a cup of the all purpose flower to make a paste. Let it sit in a dry in a room temperature area, until it doubles size.
In a bowl mix the remaining sifted flower, about a cup of the sugar, salt, 2 whole eggs, the egg yolks, orange blossom water and anise tea, orange rind, shortening and margarine or butter. Mix it thoroughly with your hands, stretching it and squashing it. Add the yeast dough and continue to knead until the dough gets an elastic consistency. *If your dough ball is too grease and soft, add more sifted flower to it, by bits until you get a nice, firm and consistent dough ball.
Make a ball with the dough, rub it with a little butter and put it in a bowl, covered it with a damp piece of cloth and let it sit in a warm area, until it doubles size (it could take as long as 2 hours). Set aside 2 c of the dough, separately to decorate the top, if desired.
On a greased surface (use margarine, butter or shortening) set the dough ball and decorate it, making different shapes with the 2 c of saved dough. Use a scrambled egg and brush the surface of the dough ball.
In 2 c of water mix 1 T flower and 2 T sugar. Heat it until you get a syrup consistency.
Preheat the oven at 350F and put the dough in for around 40 minutes. It depends on the size of your dough ball, so keep and eye on it. it should get golden brown on the top. To check if it is done, gently press the surface of the bread. If it jump right back up, VOILA!... to make sure, do the "stick a fork in the middle" routine. You know, if it comes out clean, your done!.
Sprinkle the baked bread with the syrup (wait for the syrup the cool down). Sprinkle with white sugar all over the top.

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