Honey Bunny Bread

Holidays & Special Occasions Easter- Ostara Honey Bunny Bread

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      Make this beautiful brown bunny bread the centerpiece of your Easter dinner or brunch. Decorate, if you like, with nuts or raisins to give the bunny your own special look. Or use a bit of icing, if you prefer, to outline the bunny’s features.

      3-1/4 – 3-1/2 cups (400 – 450 mL) all purpose flour
      1 cup (250 mL) quick cooking rolled oats (not instant)
      1 package (11 mL) quick rise instant dry yeast
      1 tsp (5 mL) salt
      3/4 cup (175 mL) milk
      1/3 cup (75 mL) honey
      1/4 cup (50 mL) butter
      1/4 cup (50 mL) water
      1 egg
      1 egg white, lightly beaten
      additional bits and pieces for eyes, nose, and whiskers
      Cooking Instructions
      In a large bowl, stir together 1 cup (250 mL) of the flour, the oats, yeast and salt.
      In a microwave-safe measuring cup or in a small saucepan, combine the milk, honey, butter and water.

      Microwave or heat on a stove until the butter is melted and the mixture is very hot to the touch (but not boiling). Add to the flour mixture in the bowl, stirring until everything is very well combined. Beat in the egg.
      Using a wooden spoon, begin to add the remaining flour, 1/2 cup (125 mL) at a time, stirring very well after each addition.

      When the dough has become too stiff to stir with a spoon, turn it out onto a lightly floured surface and knead by hand for about 5 to 7 minutes. Sprinkle the dough with as much additional flour as needed to form a smooth, elastic dough. Place in a lightly greased bowl, cover, and let rise in a warm place until doubled in volume — about one hour.
      When the dough has doubled, punch it down and knead it a few times.

      Let rest for about 10 minutes.
      Grease a large baking sheet. Now it’s time to form the bunny. From the ball of dough, pinch off one ball about 2-inches/5 cm in diameter (the head).

      Pinch off 5 smaller balls of dough, 1-inch (2 cm) in diameter (four feet and cotton tail). And finally, pinch off enough dough to roll into two ears — 3-inches (7 cm) long.
      First take the largest piece of dough, knead it a few times to make it smooth, then place in the middle of the baking sheet — this is the bunny’s body. Shape the ball of dough for the head and place it beside the body, tucking it slightly underneath and pinching it together where the two balls of dough meet.

      Now place the tail, pinching it into place, and the four feet. Finally, arrange the ears on top of the head and pinch them so that they stick. Cover the bunny bread and place in a warm spot to rise for about 30 minutes — or until almost double (do not punch down again).

      Brush with egg white to glaze and add candies or raisins or nuts as the bunny’s eyes and nose. (Whiskers can go on after baking.)
      Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (180 degrees C).
      Bake the bunny bread for about 30 to 35 minutes or until golden brown and the bread sounds hollow when tapped. Let cool on a rack.

      Add whiskers (long coconut shreds or licorice strings) if desired before serving.
      Tips & Tricks

      Makes one gorgeous honey bunny.

      How kids can help:
      Knead the dough by hand before rising.
      Form the dough into the bunny shape.
      Decorate to your heart’s content!

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Holidays & Special Occasions Easter- Ostara Honey Bunny Bread