Lovely version of an old favorite. Tastes best served warm. Decorate with whole candied cherries, and use other candied fruit pieces to make leaves and stems.
Dissolve yeast in warm water. Cream sugar, salt, and butter. Add egg and milk. Beat well. Blend in ½ cup flour, and let stand for a few minutes. Stir in dissolved yeast and water mixture. Beat in rest of flour and turn out on lightly floured board. Cover with clean towel and let rest for 10 minutes. Knead dough until light and smooth. Place in greased bowl and cover with towel. Let rise until doubled in size, about 1-½ hours. Punch down. Let rise again, about 30 to 45 minutes. Remove from bowl and divide in half. Place on floured surface and let rest about 10 minutes. Flatten mounds and knead ½ cup candied fruit into each mound. Flatten into 2 ovals. Fold each over the long way. Press edges together firmly, so they will not spring open while baking. Mold each into a crescent shape and place on a lightly greased baking sheet. Brush tops with butter. Cover and let rise until double, about 35 minutes. Bake at 375 degrees F in center of oven for 30 to 35 minutes.
Combine all ingredients, and spread over warm loaf. Sprinkle with confectioners’ sugar, if desired.