3/4 cup milk
1/4 cup butter, unsalted at room temperature
2 3/4 cups bread flour
l large egg
l egg yolk
2 tablespoons potato flakes
1/4 cup granulated sugar
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 envelope Fleischmann's Rapid Rise Yeast
1 stick butter, unsalted
1 cup pecan pieces
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 pound confectioners sugar
3 tablespoons milk, more if needed
1/2 teaspoon butter or vanilla-nut butter flavoring
Make filling first. Place butter in a large skillet on medium heat. Melt butter. Add pecan pieces. Stir to coat pecans. Continuously stir mixture to toast pecans in butter. When butter starts to turn brown (it will also get foamy--so need to look at melted butter in bottom of pan)remove from heat. Place a colander over a large bowl. Pour butter and nut mixture into colander. Allow to drip and cool. Make dough while nuts are cooling. Prepare one 10 inch springform pan with parchment on the bottom and vegetable spray on the sides.
Place ingredients for dough in a bread maker in the following order: milk, butter, eggs, flour, potatoes, sugar, salt, and yeast. Use dough cycle. While bread maker is processing dough, return to cooled pecans. Mix pecans with 3/4 cup brown sugar and toss to coat. Save browned butter in bowl for later use.
When bread maker has completed dough, roll dough into a 10 x 18 inch rectangle. Brush browned butter onto rectangle, leaving 1 inch along one long edge without butter. Sprinkle buttered pecans and brown sugar mixture evenly over buttered dough. Roll into a 18 inch long roll, sealing seam well. Cut through length of roll making two 18 inch pieces. Turn halves so that open sides are facing up. Grab one end of each half and braid together. Tuck ends underneath.
Place braided dough into prepared pan. Tuck loose ends under braid. Cover and allow to rise for approximately 1 hour until almost double in size. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until thermometer in thickest part of braid reads 190 degrees. May need to tent for middle 15 minutes of baking time to avoid over browning of exposed sugar.
Prepare glaze. Should not be runny, but should be liquid enough to stream from spoon. Drizzle amount desired over top of swirl.
**Note: Since flour and environment vary, add 1 to 2 tablespoons flour to dough if it is too sticky.
Yields 1 loaf (10 servings)
Beth Ralph of Ellinwood, 2nd place, KS State Fair 2009