Check out this killer recipe for Pan de Muerto! (Bread of the Dead)
1/4 cup margarine
1/4 cup milk
1/4 cup warm water (110°F / 45°C)
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons anise seed
1/4 cup white sugar
2 eggs, beaten
2 teaspoons orange zest
1/4 cup white sugar
1/4 cup orange juice
1 tablespoon orange zest
For sprinkling on at the end:
2 tablespoons white sugar
1. Heat the milk and the butter together in a medium saucepan, until the butter melts. Remove from the heat and mix the butter/milk mixture with the warm water. The mixture should be around 110°F (45°C).
2. In a large bowl, combine 1 cup of the flour, yeast, salt, anise seed and 1/4 cup of the sugar. Beat in the warm milk mixture then add the eggs and orange zest and beat until well combined. Stir in 1/2 cup of flour and continue adding more flour until the dough is soft.
3. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic (approximately 10 minutes).
4. Place the dough into a lightly greased bowl cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place until doubled in size. This will take about 1 to 2 hours. Punch the dough down and shape it into a large round loaf with a round knob on top. Place dough onto a baking sheet, loosely cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place for about 1 hour or until just about doubled in size.
5. Bake in a preheated 350°F (175°C) oven for about 35 to 45 minutes. Remove from oven let cool slightly then brush with glaze.
6. To make glaze: In a small saucepan combine the 1/4 cup sugar, orange juice and orange zest. Bring to a boil over medium heat and boil for 2 minutes. Brush over top of bread while still warm. Sprinkle glazed bread with white sugar.
* If you feel like being decorative, you can brush the top of the bread with butter and decorate with coloured sugar with or without the orange glaze.
** If you would like to make “bones” for the top of your bread, reserve some of the dough before shaping the round loaves, and divide that reserved dough into equal parts for each loaf. You can then take the reserved dough and divide it into equal strips, pinching the middle to make the ends larger. Let those sit and rise while the other dough is rising, and then place them on top of the round loaves to represent crossbones before baking.
Disclaimer: The Alte takes no responsibility for any injuries or destruction that occurs by you trying this recipe.