Swedish Coffee Cake

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1 yeast cake
1/2 C. warm water (to dissolve yeast)
1/2 C. sugar
1/3 C. shortening (crisco)
3/4 C. milk
1 tsp. salt
12-14 cardamon seeds (ground)
2 large eggs
5 - 5 1/2 C. flour

Dissolve the yeast in the warm water. Scald he milk, and add shortening, sugar, salt, and cardamon to the hot milk. Stir to dissolve the sugar. Cool to lukewarm and add the yeast mixture. Add one cup flour and set aside to form a sponge.

After the sponge forms (bubbles), add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add the rest of the flour slowly, mixing well after each addition until you have a stiff dough. Pour it out onto a floured surface and knead until elastic and not sticky. Grease a large bowl and put dough in bowl, turning once. Cover with wax paper or plastic wrap and a towel, and let it rise until double in bulk.

Pour the dough onto a lightly floured surface. Cut in half and let it rise for 5 minutes. Cut each half into thirds. Spread them out and flatten. Butter each third and sprinkle with sugar, cinnamon, and raisins. Roll each piece as for a jellyroll and seal with a little warm water on the edges. Braid the pieces from the center to the end. Flip it over and do the same. Place on a greased cookie sheet and cover with a towel and let it rise until doubled in bulk

Bake at 350º for approximately 30 minutes

Source: Florence Fogelin