No-Yeast Strawberry Cream Cheese Braid

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One of the most requested desserts I make is my Pineapple Cream Cheese Braid.  No matter who tries it, they love it! However it requires yeast and I know a lot of people are intimated by yeast.  So I decided to come up with a braid that doesn't require yeast and it's easy to make.  You just mix up the dough and filling, assemble it, bake and you're done.  In no time at all, you have a pretty and delicious breadPlus you can change the filling to whatever you prefer.  This bread is perfect for all your holiday gatherings!


Ingredients are as follows:

2 C flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. baking soda
3/4 C sugar
1/4 tsp. salt
3 ounces cream cheese, cold and cut into pieces
4 T butter, cold and cut into pieces
1/2 C milk
1 tsp. vanilla

filling:
8 ounces cream cheese, softened
1/4 C sugar
1/2 C preserves

glaze: 
1 C powdered sugar  
1 tsp. vanilla
1-2 Tbsp. milk 


Directions:

Preheat oven to 375 degrees; grease a baking sheet.

Mix together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, sugar and salt.  Add the cream cheese and butter.

 

Mix until crumbly.


Add the milk and vanilla; mix until it comes together.  Do not over mix!


Place on a floured surface and knead for a few minutes.


Roll out into a rectangle about 10" x 18".


Cream the cream cheese and sugar together until fluffy.


Place dough onto the cookie sheet.  Spread the cream cheese down the center of the dough. Spread the preserves on top.


Cut 1" strips diagonally down both sides of the dough.

  
Flip one end up and overlap alternating pieces until completed.

  
Bake for 25-30 minutes; until golden brown.  Set aside.


Mix together the  powdered sugar, vanilla and milk.  Pour over braid.


Slice, serve and enjoy!




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