The smells that waft through our house while baking Paska bring back many happy memories of the farm kitchen of my Mom, and the welcoming warmth that filled her home.
How To Make Grandma Kasper’s Easter Paska Bread:
I usually use loaf tins and sometimes I will use large tins but I find it hard to find the ideal sizes and shapes for baking.
Type: Bread Recipe
Prep Time: 25 min
Rise Time: 2 hrs
Bake Time: 50 min
Yield: 2 loaf tins & 3 medium-sized round tins
- 3 pkgs traditional yeast
- 1 cup warm water + 1 tbsp sugar dissolved in it
- 2 1/2 cups sugar
- 3/4 cup butter – softened
- 2 tbsp shortening
- juice of 1 fresh squeezed lemon or 1/2 tsp artificial lemon flavoring
- 8 eggs – separated
- 3 1/2 cups milk
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 cup golden raisins
- approximately 7 cups flour – might need slightly more or less
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
- Allow raisins to plump up in a small bowl of hot water for about 15 min, then drain and set aside.
- Dissolve 1 tbsp sugar in 1 cup water. Sprinkle yeast on top, stir once and allow yeast to bloom in a warm location, covered with a clean tea towel.
- Separate eggs and place egg yolks in large mixing bowl. Beat egg whites until they hold soft peaks, in a separate, clean bowl and set aside.
- Scald milk, add in salt and stir until dissolved. Allow to cool somewhat.
- In large mixing bowl, beat egg yolks adding sugar gradually. Stir in cooled milk, stir, add softened butter, vanilla extract & lemon juice. Combine well.
- Slowly add in 3 cups of flour and stir.
- Stir in yeast mixture and mix thoroughly.
- Add 2 more cups flour, mixing until dough is soft.
- Fold in beaten egg whites. * Note: Dough should still be soft but not sticky. If still sticky, slowly add 1/4 cup flour at a time until dough just barely stops being sticky.
- Knead dough until it becomes somewhat elastic, but remains soft. If you have to add flour, do it conservatively, kneading dough well before adding more flour.
- Slightly oil or butter the pan in which you will rise the dough. Allow dough to rise, covered with a clean tea towel, in a warm location until it has doubled in bulk. Depending on how warm it is, the dough will take about 40 min for this process.
- Punch down dough and allow to rise again.
- Pinch off enough dough to fill the first pan or tin to just less than half full. Gently roll out a piece of dough and sprinkle desired amount of raisins to distribute evenly over surface of dough. Roll into a loose cylinder the length of loaf pan or diameter of circle of tin. Tuck in the ends and place dough into greased pans or tins, filling up to just under one half full, and allow to rise until double in bulk and very light. This can take up to 1 hr.
- Bake in oven at 375 degrees F for 5 min, then reduce heat to 325 degrees F for about 40 min, at which time you need to check to be sure dough has risen well and the top is golden brown. When the tin is tapped on the bottom, it should sound hollow. * Tip: If necessary to get to this stage, you can bake the paskas for another 10 – 15 min, checking every 6 min. You don’t want to burn the paska.
- When baked as desired, remove from oven, allow to stand for 5 min, then turn over to remove. Once removed, place paska on its side, turning it from time to time until completely cooled.
If desired, you may want to decorate the paska with a butter cream icing & colorful jelly beans, sprinkles or chocolate eggs. Check out this webisode of Cooking with Kimberly to see how I do it:
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I hope you enjoy this Easter Recipe on Cooking with Kimberly. Until next time…
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