1. Whisk milk, sugar, and yeast in a small bowl until dissolved, then let sit until foamy, about 5 minutes. Whisk 2 cups flour and the salt in a large bowl. In a medium bowl, whisk two eggs, the butter, orange zest and juice, and anise extract until well combined.
2. Stir yeast and egg mixtures into dry ingredients, then add remaining 1 1/4 cups flour and mix until dough comes together. Transfer to a lightly floured surface and knead until soft and smooth, 5 to 10 minutes, adding more flour as needed if dough is sticking to counter. Place in a large greased bowl and turn to coat, then cover and let sit in a warm area until doubled in size, about 1 hour.
3. Line a baking sheet with parchment, then grease and set aside. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface and divide into three equal pieces. Roll each piece into a 24"-long rope, then arrange ropes parallel to one another and pinch one set of ends together. Loosely braid dough, then transfer to prepared baking sheet and form into a ring, pressing ends together to seal. Nestle dyed eggs into braid, then cover dough loosely and let rise until puffed but not quite doubled in size, about 45 minutes.
4. Center a rack in oven and heat to 350 degrees. In a small bowl, whisk remaining egg with water, then brush over top and sides of dough, avoiding dyed eggs; top evenly with sprinkles. Bake until ring is lightly browned and sounds hollow when tapped, 25 to 35 minutes. Let cool completely on a wire rack before serving. Store at room temperature for up to 2 days.
Source: Hannaford fresh Magazine, March-April 2021