Pan de Muerto is a delicious sweet bread with a light orange flavor. I have tasted many a Pan de Muerto. Not all Pan de Muerto recipes are the same. Some have a strong anise flavor. Others have a hard outer crust. My recipe is just how I like my Pan de Muerto and I hope you will enjoy it.
Pan De Muerto
- 4 to 4-1/2 cups flour
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 envelope active dry yeast
- 3/4 cup milk
- 1/3 cup butter
- 2 eggs
- 1 teaspoon orange extract
- 1 Tablespoon grated orange zest
- 1/4 cup melted butter
In a large bowl, combine 1-1/2 cups of the flour, the sugar, the salt and the yeast. Set aside. In a small saucepan, heat milk and butter until very warm. (About 120º F) Pour into flour mixture. Beat with an electric mixer on medium speed for 1 minute,
Using a wooden spoon to stir, add enough remaining flour until dough forms a ball.
Place dough on a lightly floured surface and knead for 6 to 8 minutes or until dough is smooth and elastic. Place in a greased bowl. Turn greased side up; cover and let set 1 hour or until double in size.
Remove a large handful of dough, plus a tablespoon sized piece of dough and set aside. Form remaining dough into a circle. Place on lightly greased cookie sheet.
Divide the handful of dough into 6 equal parts shape into 4-inch rope. Roll rope with your fingers open to achieve this effect.
Position ropes on top of the circle of dough. Roll tablespoon of dough into a ball and center on top of dough. Cover and let rest for another 30 minutes.
Preheat oven to 350º F. Brush dough with melted butter. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until a deep golden brown. (Mine isn't as golden because my oven isn't hot enough.) Remove from oven and immediately brush with melted butter. Sprinkle granulated sugar all over the bread. (If you have kids, they can help with this step. Just make sure they don't smoosh the bread! Oops!) Enjoy!!!