Recipe: Cream Cheese Braid with Almond Glaze

This bread takes a little extra time to make, but it is definitely well worth the effort!  The creamy, moist center makes this bread extra-special and is a perfect treat for the holidays.

Cream Cheese Braid

Makes 3 loaves {can be frozen}.  Make ahead: needs to chill overnight.

Note: If your family isn't a fan of pineapple, chopped, canned pears can be
substituted for the pineapple.

4 cups flour
2 pkg. active dry yeast
1 8-oz. carton sour cream
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon salt
2 eggs
1 8-oz. pkg. cream cheese, softened
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1 egg yolk
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 8-oz can crushed pineapple, well drained
1 recipe Almond Glaze {below}
1/4 cup sliced almonds


1.  In a large bowl, mix 2 cups of flour and the yeast.

2.  In a medium saucepan, cook and stir sour cream, water, butter, 1/2 cup sugar, and salt over medium-low heat just until warm {120-130 degrees}.

3.  Add warm mixture and 2 whole eggs to flour mixture; stir until well combined.  Stir in remaining flour. Cover tightly and chill overnight.

4.  For filling, in medium bowl, beat cream cheese, 1/3 cup sugar, egg yolk, and vanilla.  Stir in pineapple; set aside.

5.  Divide dough into three portions.  On a well-floured surface, roll one dough portion to a 12x9-inch rectangle {keep remaining dough chilled until ready to use}.  Grease two large baking sheets; set aside.

6.  Spread a scant 2/3 cup cream cheese filling on rolled dough to within 1/2 inch of edges.

7.  Roll up, starting with a long side.  Seal seam and place seam-side down on baking sheet.

8.  Cut slits 2 inches apart and half way through loaf.  Repeat with remaining dough and gilling.  Cover; let rise in a warm place until nearly doubled {45 to 60 minutes}.  Bake in a 375 degree oven about 20 minutes or until golden.  Cool on wire racks.  While warm drizzle with Almond Glaze and sprinkle with almonds.

Almond Glaze

In medium bowl mix 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar, 1 tablespoon milk, and 1/2 - 1 teaspoon almond extract {to taste}.  Stir in additional milk 1 teaspoon at a time until drizzling consistency.

Note: If you don't have almond extract on hand, replace almond extract with 1 teaspoon of vanilla for Vanilla Glaze.

Put glaze in a ziploc bag, close bag and cut a hole in one of the corners.  Drizzle over warm bread.

To freeze: Prepare and bake as directed; do not glaze.  Wrap in foil and place in freezer bags.  Freeze for up to 3 months.  To serve, place on baking sheet; bake in a 375 degree oven for 15 to 20 minutes or until heated through.  Drizzle with glaze and sprinkle with nuts.

Source: BHG Hometown Cooking Magazine, Dec. 1999

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Blossom said...

That looks really good! Thank you for sharing. I'm stopping by from the TGIF Linky

Vanessa said...

This bread can be very addicting...we've only got half a loaf left! :)

Beth ( said...

YUMMY! That looks delicious! I hope you had a great Thanksgiving! Thanks for linking up to TGIF & we'll see you next week! Don't forget to enter for a chance to Guest Post & Have your blog featured on my sidebar for the entire month of December -
Beth =-)

Vanessa said...

Thanks for the info!

Felicia said...

This is a must try for me!!

Vanessa said...

I hope your family enjoys this recipe as much as we do!