This fruit bread is made with some of the Homemade Liqueur's that I just recently posted.
It is to be accompanied with the "Spirited Spread"...also made with added Homemade Liqueur's. (Recipe will follow)
The Bread and Spirited Spread
..along with a bottle of homemade liqueur would be beautiful as a gift in a basket for any occasion.
In a small saucepan combine dried fruit bits, apricots, and Homemade Liqueur. Cook, uncovered, over low heat till all the liquid is absorbed; cool.
In a large mixer bowl combine 2 cups of the flour and yeast. In a saucepan heat milk, brown sugar, butter or margarine, and salt just till warm (115-120 degrees) and butter is almost melted; stir constantly. Add to flour mixture; add eggs. Beat with electric mixer on low speed for 30 seconds scraping sides of bowl constantly. Beat 3 minutes at high speed. Stir in fruit.
Stir in as much of the remaining flour as you can mix in using a spoon. On a lightly floured surface, knead in enough remaining flour to make a moderately soft dough that is smooth and elastic (6 to 8 minutes total). Shape into a ball. Place in a greased bowl; turn once. cover; let rest 10 minutes. Divide in half. Roll one half into a 12x8 inch rectangle. Make 3 inch long cuts at 1 inch intervals on each long side. Fold strips from alternating sides over center of dough to form a criss-cross pattern. Place on greased baking sheet. Repeat with remaining dough. Cover; let rise till nearly double (1 to 1 1/4 hours.) Bake in a 340 degree oven for 25 to 30 minutes or till bread tests done. Cool on wire Rack.
Serve with Spirited Spread. (recipe added on JAP)
Makes 2 loaves.