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Candy Cane Loaves

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1 package active dry yeast
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup water (110 to 115 F)
1/2 cup butter, melted
3/4 cup warm milk (110 to 115 F)
2 teaspoons salt
4 eggs
7 to 7 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup chopped walnuts
1 cup packed brown sugar
1 cup chopped dates
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon allspice
3 tablespoons butter, melted
2 cups powdered sugar
3 to 4 tablespoons warm milk
1 tablespoon butter, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon lemon extract
1/4 cup chopped walnuts

In a mixing bowl, dissolve yeast in water and milk. Add eggs, sugar, butter, salt and 3 cups flour; beat until smooth. Add enough remaining flour to form a soft dough.

Turn onto a floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, 6 to 8 minutes. Place in a greased bowl; turn once to grease top. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 to 1 1/2 hours.

For filling, combine nuts, brown sugar, dates, allspice and cinnamon; set aside.

Punch dough down and divide into fourths. Roll one portion into a 12 x 7-inch rectangle. Brush with some butter; sprinkle with 2/3 cup filling. Roll up, jelly roll-style, starting with a long side; pinch to seal.

Place on a greased baking sheet; shape top to form a cane. Repeat with remaining dough, filling and butter.

Cover and let rise until doubled, about 35 minutes.

Bake at 350 degrees F for 25 minutes or until golden brown. Cool on wire racks.

Combine the first five glaze ingredients; drizzle stripes over loaves. Sprinkle with nuts.

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Makes 4 loaves

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