Time 45 minutes
Yields Makes 2 loaves of approximately 8 servings each
(Kirk McKoy / Los Angeles Times)

In a saucepan over medium-high heat, scald the milk. Remove from heat and add the sugar and shortening. Cool to lukewarm. Add yeast and set aside for 5 minutes to activate the yeast. Stir in 3 cups flour, beat, then add the salt and eggs and beat again. Add cherries and orange peel, raisins and currants. Stir in the remaining flour.


On a lightly floured board, knead well until smooth and elastic, about 5 minutes. Place the dough in an oiled bowl and cover loosely with plastic wrap; set aside in a warm place until the dough is doubled. Punch the dough down and let double again.


Heat the oven to 375 degrees. Divide the dough in half and place each half in a greased 9-inch by 5-inch loaf pan. Bake until browned on top, 25 to 30 minutes. Cool on a rack before icing.



In a small bowl, beat the milk with the powdered sugar until the frosting is thick enough to spread. Add the butter and continue to beat several minutes until very creamy. Spoon over top of cooled loaves and let dribble down the sides.

Russ Parsons is a former food writer and columnist at the Los Angeles Times.
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