Rosca de Reyes (Kings Day Cake)
1/2 cup Lukewarm Water
2 tsp Active Dry Yeast
2 1/2 cups All Purpose Flour
1/2 tsp Salt
1/4 cup Sugar
1/2 cup Softened Butter, plus 2 tablespoons of melted butter for glazing
1 1/2 cups Crystallized Fruit & Candied Peels
1 1/2 cups Confectioners Sugar, plus extra for dusting
2 Tbsp Light Cream, crystallized fruit and candied cherries to decorate
1. Pour the water into a small bowl, stir in the dry yeast and set in a warm place until frothy.
2. Crack four of the eggs and divide the yolks and the whites. Place the four yolks in a small bowl; save the egg whites another use, or discard.
3. Put 1 1/4 cups of the flour in a mixing bowl. Add the salt and sugar. Add the remaining two eggs and the four egg yolks.
4. Add 1/2 cup of butter to the bowl together with the yeast-water mixture. Combine all the ingredients well.
5. Put the crystallized fruit and peel into a separate bowl. Add 1/2 cup of the remaining flour and toss the fruit with the flour to coat it.
6. Add the floured fruit to the egg mixture, along with the rest of the flour. Stir into a moderately soft, non-sticky dough. Knead the dough on a lightly floured surface for about 8-10 minutes until smooth.
7. Shape the dough into a ball. Using the floured handle of a wooden spoon, make a hole in the center and enlarge the hole.
8. Put the dough ring onto a greased baking sheet and cover lightly with oiled plastic wrap. Set in a warm place for about two hours or until nearly doubled in bulk.
9. Preheat the oven to 350 F. Brush the dough with the melted butter and bake about 35 minutes or until it has risen well and is cooked through and springy.
10. Remove and cool on wire rack.
11. Mix the confectioner sugar and cream in a bowl. Drizzle the mixture on the cake when is cool and decorate it with crystallized fruit and candied cherries. Dust with confectioner sugar.