King Cake

Cake:
2 (.25 ounce) packages active dry yeast
1/2 cup sugar
1 cup warm milk
1/2 cup butter, softened
5 egg yolks
4 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons salt

Filling:
1 teaspoon grated lemon zest
1(8 ounce) package cream cheese
1/2 cup confectioners' sugar
1 egg

Icing:
2 cups confectioners' sugar
1/4 cup lemon juice
2 tablespoons milk

1 small plastic baby
1 tablespoon each of purple, free, and gold colored sugar

In a large bowl, dissolve yeast and pinch of the sugar in warm milk. let stand until creamy, about 10 minutes.

Stir the egg yolks into the milk mixture. In the bowl of an electric mixer, combine the flour, salt and remaining sugar. With a dough hook mix the milk/egg mixture 1 cup at a time into the flour, then slowly add the butter into the dough in tablespoon size chunks. When the dough has pulled together, turn it out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth, about 8 minutes. Lightly oil a large bowl, place the dough in the bowl and turn to coat with oil. Cover with a damp cloth and let rise in a warm place until doubled in volume, about 2 hours.

In a small bowl, combine the cream cheese, egg, lemon zest and 1/2 cup confectioners' sugar. Mix well. in another small bowl, combine the remaining 2 cups confectioners' sugar, lemon juice and 2 tablespoons milk. Mix well and set aside.

Turn the dough out onto a floured surface. Roll the dough out into a 6x30 inch rectangle. Spread the cream cheese filling across the center of the dough. Bring the two long edges together and seal completely. Using your hands shape the dough into a long cylinder and place on a greased baking sheet, seam-side down. Shape the dough into a ring. Cover the ring with a towel and place in a warm place to rise until doubled in size, about 45 minutes.

Bake in preheated 350F oven until golden brown, about 30 minutes. Allow the bread to cool. Press the baby into the ring from the bottom so that it is completely hidden by the dough. Drizzle cooled cake with lemon/sugar glaze and decorate with sugar sprinkles.
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