1 cup of warm milk
1 sachet of dry yeast
4 ½ cups of flour
1 cup of sugar
½ teaspoon of salt
1 orange (zest)
½ tablespoon of mahleb
1 tablespoon of melted butter
3 small eggs well beaten
some egg yolk
1 tablespoon of milk
⅓ cup of almonds finely chopped
Mix the milk, the yeast, ½ cup of flour and a pinch of sugar in a large bowl. Cover with a towel and set aside in a warm place for one hour.
In another bowl, mix the remaing flour, the salt, the sugar, the orange zest and the mahlepi. Make a well in the center and add the yeast mixture, the butter and the eggs.
Κnead until the dough is smooth and doesn't stick to your hands. Then cover it with a towel and set it aside to rise until doubled in bulk. Divide the dough into three parts and create a braid.
Pinch together at both ends to hold the braid. Let it rise for two hours. Beat together the egg yolk and the milk. Brush over the braid and sprinkle with almonds.
Preheat oven to 180°C and bake for about 40-45 minutes until golden brown.