5 to 6 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup sugar
2 tsp salt
2 pkg active dry yeast
1 1/2 cups milk
1/2 cup butter
The filling for the Tannenbaum
1/2 cup butter, melted
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup chopped nuts
1 tbsp cinnamon
1. In a large bowl, combine 2 cups flour, 1/2 cup sugar, salt and yeast; blend well.
2. In medium saucepan, heat 1 1/2 cups milk and 1/2 cup butter until very warm (120 to 130° F).
3. Add warm liquid and eggs to flour mixture. Blend at low-speed, with a hand-held mixer, until moistened; beat 3 minutes at medium speed.
4. By hand, stir in an additional 2 to 2 1/2 cups flour to form a stiff dough.
5. On floured surface, knead in 1 to 1 1/2 cups flour until dough is smooth and elastic, about 5 to 8 minutes.
Alternately, use a stand mixer to knead the dough, adding 1 cup of flour at a time, until dough cleans sides of bowl.
6. Place dough in greased bowl; cover loosely with plastic wrap and cloth towel. Let rise in warm place (80 to 85° F) until light and doubles in size, about 1 to 1 1/4 hours.
7. Generously grease 2 15x10x1 inch baking pans. Punch down dough several times to remove all air bubbles. Divide dough into 2 parts.
8. On lightly floured surface, roll one part into a triangle with two 15-inch sides and a 12-inch base. Brush with 1 tbsp of the melted butter. Or make smaller tannenbaums.
9. In a small bowl, combine 2 tbsp melted butter, 1 cup sugar, nuts and cinnamon; mix well. Sprinkle 1/2 of filling evenly over dough.
10. To shape tree, starting at top point of dough triangle, fold 15-inch sides to meet in center, pressing all seams to seal. Invert, seam side down onto greased pan. With scissors or sharp knife, make 12 slits about 1 inch apart along each long outside edge of tree, cutting to within 1/2 inch of center of dough. Starting at bottom of tree, twist each strip so cut side is up to show filling. Cover, let rise in warm place until light and doubled in size, about 30-40 minutes. Repeat with remaining dough and filling.
11. Heat oven to 350° F. Uncover dough. Bake 20-30 minutes or until golden brown, for 15×12 inch cakes. Adjust time accordingly if you make smaller cakes. (15 minutes for these 7×3 cakes).
12. Cool 5 minutes; remove from pans. Cool on wire racks. In small bowl, blend powdered sugar and enough milk for desired drizzling consistency. Drizzle over coffee cakes. Garnish with red & green holiday chocolate morsels.