|4 1/2||teaspoons||yeast, active dry||2 packages|
|1||cup||sugar||plus 1 tablespoon|
|1||cup||butter, unsalted||or margarine, room-temperature|
|6 1/2||cups||flour, all-purpose|
|2||pounds||cottage cheese||dry, or 4 cups farmer's old-fashioned white cheese|
|1||tablespoon||vanilla sugar||or vanilla plus sugar*|
Prepare cheese filling:
With a grinder or food processor, process cheese.
Do not puree or over-process.
Place egg yolks, sugar and vanilla sugar in a large bowl.
Beat until pale and creamy, at least 10 minutes.
Add ground cheese, a little at a time, while beating.
Beat until smooth.
In a small bowl, dissolve yeast and 1 tablespoon sugar in 1/4 cup warm water.
Let stand 5 to 10 minutes until foamy.
Place 1 cup sugar, butter or margarine and eggs in large bowl.
Beat until pale and fluffy.
Add yeast mixture, 1 pint milk, 2 cups flour and salt.
Beat until well blended.
Stir in enough remaining flour to make a soft dough.
Turn out dough on a lightly floured surface.
Clean and grease bowl.
Knead dough until smooth and elastic.
Place dough in greased bowl, turning to coat all sides.
Cover with a clean damp cloth; let rise in a warm place, free from drafts, until doubled in bulk.
Preheat oven to 350 F.
Grease side and bottom of a 10 inch springform pan.
Divide dough into thirds.
Using your hands, gently press 1/3 of dough evenly over bottom and side of pan.
Evenly spread cheese filling over dough-lined pan.
On a lightly floured surface, roll out another 1/3 of dough to a 10-inch circle.
Place over cheese filling.
Gently pat with your hands.
Using a pastry brush, lightly brush milk over top of dough.
Cut remaining 1/3 dough in 4 even pieces.
Shape 3 pieces into long ropes.
Braid ropes; apply to outer edge of cake.
Using remaining dough, cut desired figures with various cutters of form shapes with your hands.
Arrange figures on top of dough as desired.
Lightly brush with milk.
Bake 50 to 60 minutes or until golden brown.
Cool cake in pan 5 minutes on a rack.
Remove pan side; cool completely on rack.
Makes 1 (10 inch) cake.
First published: 1996-01-27 last updated: 2013-04-20
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