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Italian Easter Dove

3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (3 1/2 to 4 cups)
1/3 cup sugar
1 package Fleischmann's Quick-Rise Instant Yeast
2 teaspoons grated lemon rind
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup milk
1/4 cup butter or margarine
2 eggs -- at room temperature
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
3/4 cup almond paste (7 ounces)
1 whole clove
1 egg white -- lightly beaten
1/3 cup slivered almonds


Set aside 1 cup flour from total amount. Mix remaining flour, sugar, undissolved yeast, lemon rind and salt in large bowl. Heat water, milk and butter until hot to touch, 125 to 130F. Butter does not need to melt. Gradually add to dry ingredients; blend well. Stir in eggs, almond extract and enough additional flour to make soft dough. Knead on lightly floured surface until smooth and elastic, about 6 minutes. Cover; let rest 10 minutes.


Divide dough in half. To form wings: roll one half of dough to a 7 15-inch oval. Place on greased baking sheet, curving ends downward. To form body: roll out remaining half of dough to a triangle 15 inches high and 6 inches wide at the base. Place triangle directly over center of the curved oval. Twist top third of triangle, left to right; shape to form dove's head. Twist bottom third right to left to form tail. With sharp knife slash wings and tail on a diagonal to form feathers.


Brush with egg white. Form almond paste into small balls (1/4-inch diameter). Arrange balls on dove's body and wings. Press one slivered almond into each ball. Use clove for eye. Cover; let rise in warm, draft-free place until doubled in size, about 45 to 50 minutes.


Bake at 325F for 40 minutes or until done. Remove from baking sheet and cool on wire rack.


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