Stir together yeast, 1/4 teaspoon sugar, and warm milk in a large bowl and let stand until foamy, about 10 minutes. Stir in 1 1/2 cups flour and cover bowl tightly with plastic wrap. Let stand in a warm place until doubled, about 1 hour.
Beat 4 yolks with remaining sugar in a bowl with an electric mixer at TK speed until mixture is thick and pale, 2 to 3 minutes. Beat in brandy and salt.
Stir yeast dough to deflate. Add yolk mixture and butter and stir until well blended. Beat 3 egg whites in a bowl with cleaned beaters until they hold soft peaks. Fold whites into batter, then stir in remaining 2 1/2 cups flour. Cover bowl and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 hour 10 minutes.
Stir dough to deflate, then stir in almonds and raisins.
Butter 4 clean (10 1/2-ounce) coffee cans. Line bottom of each with a round of parchment or wax paper. Dust insides with flour, knocking out excess. Divide dough evenly among cans. Let dough rise in cans, covered with a towel, until about 1/2 inch from rim, about 1 hour.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
Whisk together remaining yolk and water, and lightly brush over tops of dough. Bake loaves in cans until tops are golden brown, 35 to 40 minutes. Turn loaves out onto a rack, turn right side up, and let cool completely, about 1 1/2 hours.
Sift powdered sugar into a bowl, then stir in lemon juice. Spread glaze over tops of loaves, letting it drip down the sides. Let loaves stand until icing is set, about 15 minutes.