• Cheese Coffee Cake Braid

Cheese Coffee Cake Braid

4 cups bread flour
¼ cup sugar
2 ½ teaspoons yeast
½ teaspoon kosher salt
2/3 cup water
6 Tablespoons butter
2 eggs
1 egg white
Pearl sugarIn large bowl, mix together 1 cup flour, sugar, yeast and salt. In a glass measuring cup, heat water and butter to 120 degrees. Combine with dry ingredients and beat for 2 minutes. Add eggs and ½ cup flour. Beat for 2 minutes more. Add 2 cups flour and knead for 8 minutes. You may need to add up to ½ cup more flour. Dough should be soft, smooth and elastic.Cover and let rise in draft free place until double in size. Punch down and divide dough in three equal pieces.Filling:
12 oz. cream cheese
1/3 cup brown sugar
1 egg
1 cup snipped dates, craisins OR Turkish apricots
¾ cup chopped pecans
Blend all ingredients together well.Roll one section of dough into a 12 by 7 inch rectangle. Spread one third of filling down center (lengthwise) of dough rectangle. Using a sharp paring knife, on 12 inch side of rectangle cut 1 inch wide strips from edge of filling to outer edge of rectangle. Alternating sides, fold strips at an angle across filling, forming a braid. Transfer to greased sheet pan. Cover with plastic wrap that has been sprayed with cooking spray. Repeat with remaining 2 pieces of dough. Let rise until doubled in size.Whisk together 1 teaspoon water with one egg white. Brush over tops of loaves. Sprinkle with pearl sugar. Bake at 375 degrees for 12 to 15 minutes.