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1. In a large bowl combine 2 cups of the flour and the yeast; set aside. In a small saucepan heat and stir milk, granulated sugar, 1/3 cup butter, and the salt just until warm (120 degrees F to 130 degrees F) and butter almost melts. Add milk mixture and eggs to flour mixture. Beat with an electric mixer on low to medium for 30 seconds, scraping sides of the bowl constantly. Beat on high for 3 minutes. Using a wooden spoon, stir in as much of the remaining 2 1/2 to 3 cups flour as you can.
2. Turn dough out onto a floured surface. Knead in enough remaining flour to make a moderately soft dough that is smooth and elastic (3 to 5 minutes total). Shape dough into a ball. Place dough in a lightly greased bowl, turning once to grease surface of the dough. Cover and let rise in a warm place until double in size (1 to 1 1/2 hours).
3. Punch dough down. Turn onto a lightly floured surface. Divide in half. Cover with a clean kitchen towel and let rest 10 minutes. Lightly grease a large baking sheet; set aside. For filling, in a medium bowl stir together brown sugar, and 1/3 cup flour. Using a pastry blender, cut in remaining 1/3 cup butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Stir in plums and almond extract.
4. Roll each dough half into a 14x8-inch rectangle. Sprinkle filling over dough, leaving 1 inch unfilled along one of the long sides. Roll up each rectangle, starting from the filled long side. Pinch dough to seal seams and ends. Place rolls on the prepared baking sheet. Cover and let rise in a warm place until nearly double in size (about 30 minutes).
5. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until golden and bread sounds hollow when lightly tapped. Cool on baking sheet on a wire rack for at least 45 minutes. Spread icing over each loaf. If desired, sprinkle with almonds. Slice to serve.
1. In a small bowl combine butter and vanilla. Gradually stir in powdered sugar. Stir in milk, 1 teaspoon at a time, until icing reaches spreading consistency. Makes about 3/4 cup.