Pao Duce (Portuguese Sweet Bread)
An island favorite that has made it’s way to cities afar. I was recently surprised to see a Local Bakery Brand, long since closed, now being sold in supermarkets on the mainland. Every Portuguese family I know has a different version of this Pao Duce (Portuguese Sweet Bread) local recipe. A must have along-side your Island Beef Stew.
2 (1/4 oz.) packets active dry yeast
1/4 c. warm water
1 c. milk, scalded*, cooled
1/2 c. butter, melted
3/4 c. sugar
1 tsp. salt
3 + 1 large eggs, 3 eggs beaten, 1 for brushing onto loaves
5 1/2 -6 c. all-purpose flour
* To scald milk: Scald milk by heating in a small saucepan over medium heat until bubbles appear around inside edge of pan and milk is just about to boil. Pour milk into a mixing bowl to cool. In a large mixing bowl; dissolve yeast in warm water. Stir in milk, butter, sugar, salt, 3 eggs and ½ of flour (3 c.). Beat until smooth. Add remaining flour to bring dough to desired consistency, so it is easy to handle. Onto floured work surface; turn dough out.. Knead until smooth and elastic, about 5 minutes. Place in greased bowl; turn greased side up. Cover with a damp towel; let rise in warm area until doubled in size. About 1 ½-2 hours. Punch down dough; divide into halves. Shape each half into a round, slightly flat loaf. Place each loaf in greased 9-inch round baking pan. Cover; let rise in warm area until doubled in size, about 1 hour. Preheat oven to 350 degrees . Beat remaining egg slightly; brush over tops of bread loaves. Bake until golden brown, 35-45 minutes. Makes 2 loaves.