Mexican Bread of the Dead (Pan De Muerto)
WHAT YOU NEED
- 1/2 cup Cacique® Crema Mexicana Agria
- 1/4 cup butter, unsalted
- 1/4 cup warm water
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 tsp. active dry yeast
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1/2 tsp. anise seeds, ground
- 1 tsp. cinnamon, ground
- 1/4 cup white sugar
- 2 eggs, beaten
- 2 tsp. orange zest
- FOR THE GLAZE
- 1/4 cup white sugar
- 1/4 cup orange juice
- 1 Tbsp. orange zest
- 2 Tbsp. white sugar (for sprinkling)
HOW TO MAKE IT
- In a medium saucepan, over low heat warm the Cacique® Crema Mexicana Agria and the butter, until the butter melts. Remove from the heat and stir in the warm water. The mixture should be around 110°F. Set aside.
- If using a heavy duty mixer use the hook attachment or mix by hand using a wooden spoon. In a large bowl combine 1 cup of flour, yeast, salt, ground anise seeds, cinnamon and ¼ cup of sugar. Slowly add the warm cream mixture, mix until incorporated, add ½ cup of flour and the eggs and orange zest, and mix until well combined. Stir in ½ cup of flour and continue adding more flour until the dough is soft.
- Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic. Place the dough into a lightly greased large bowl cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place until doubled in size. This will take about 2 hours.
- Punch the dough down and set aside ¼ of the dough, shape the remaining ¾ of the dough into a large round loaf. Take the set aside ¼ dough and remove a large pinch of dough and roll into a small round meatball sized ball (set aside), with the balance of the dough make 2 bone shapes. Lay the bone shapes across the top of the loaf, making an X pattern, and place the round dough ball on top. Place the loaf on a lightly greased baking sheet, cover with plastic wrap and let rest in a warm place for 1 more hour or until just about doubled in size.
- Preheat oven at 350°F and bake for about 35 to 40 minutes, until the bread is golden. Remove from oven, let cool slightly, then brush with glaze.
- Glaze preparation: In a small saucepan combine 1/4 cup sugar, orange juice and orange zest. Bring to a boil over medium heat for 2 minutes. Brush over top of bread while still warm. Sprinkle glazed bread with white sugar.