Apple Ginger Walnut Bread


We’re back, bitches. Where have I been? It’s a long story – I’ll post it after the goodies. In the mean time, it is Fall! Time for apple recipes. Himself loves candied ginger, and today I was thinking about making a chutney with apples and ginger, and then changed direction and decided on some breakfast cake. Because breakfast. And cake. And y’all already know how I feel about that.

Spicy Apple Nut Bread
Makes two 9×5 or four 8×4 loaves

Cream method:
In your mixer bowl, add:
4 c. AP flour
1 c. sugar
1 c. unsalted butter
1 tsp salt
1 ½ tsp. Baking powder
¼ tsp. Baking soda
1 tsp. Pumpkin pie spice
½ tsp. cinnamon

Turn on low until mixture looks like fine crumbs.

Meanwhile, prepare the fruity nutty bits:
Peel and cube 3 medium tart apples (granny smith, pippin)
Toss with 1 Tbsp. sugar and about another ½ tsp. Cinnamon to keep them from browning.
Chop ½ c. candied ginger into pieces about the size of a chocolate chip
Chop ½ c. walnuts
Soak ½ c. raisins in 1 c. hot water and a couple drops of vanilla (or rum)

Grease and line with baking parchment your loaf pans. Preheat your oven to 350*.

Once the dry ingredients look like crumbs, turn off the mixer and add in:
1 c. buttermilk
4 eggs
2 tsp. Vanilla extract

Start low and go to high and let it go a couple minutes until the mixture is fluffy-looking and about a shade lighter in color. While that’s going, drain the raisins. Once it’s fluffy and lighter, add all the fruity nutty bits, and give it a couple whirs just to stir them in.

Divide between your pans and bake about 50-60 mins (larger loaf=longer time, obvs) until it passes the toothpick test.

When the loaves are mostly cool, remove from the pan to finish cooling on a rack. You can brush with melted butter and sprinkle of cinnamon sugar at this stage, if you’re feelin’ it. Or a simple water/powdered sugar glaze. Just something to hold in the moisture. Once it’s cool, prepare the drizzle.

The Drizzle:
In a microwave-safe bowl (or 4 cup pyrex!), put:
2 Tbsp. dark brown sugar
1 Tbsp butter
1 Tbps. water
Microwave until it is bubbling. (Mine took about 30 seconds). Stir in:
¼ tsp. salt
½ tsp. vanilla
1 c. powdered sugar.
Stir. It should be the consistency of crepe batter. Put it in a pastry tube to drizzle over the cooled bread.

That drizzle is one of my favorites – it’s the salty, almost caramel taste that I just love.

Ok – enjoy! And thanks for coming back after my unplanned three-month hiaitus. Our Cindy dog fell ill back in June, and passed in July. She was our good girl for thirteen years and I was devastated. Right now writing this two months after she passed and I’ve got tears blurring the screen. Then something went wrong with the air conditioner and water got underneath the oak floor and we’ve been dealing with contractors and insurance and…..sigh. It’s sucked my will to create. I did not have enough joy for me, so I couldn’t find any to share. But ya know, that damn sun just keeps coming up every morning. Take care, y’all. And if you have puppers, give them a big hug because our time together is finite.

Ginger Raisin Spice Bread

So I want to call this pumpkin ginger raisin spice bread, but just can’t. I’m still trying to use up the 8 cups of cooked pumpkin I batch froze back in September with that ill-fated grocery store pumpkin buy. I just cannot bring myself to just throw it out. It is not very orange and does not taste very pumpkin-like. 

Pumpkin1Cmed

I learned my lesson, and have four sugar pumpkins from Willcox waiting to be cooked and bagged. But I know myself, if I cook those now that poor grocery pumpkin will have died for naught, collecting freezer burn in his zippy back way in the back. But I digress.  I cannot make pie with this shit, so I decided on a pumpkin bread. Only with lots of flavor additions like candied ginger, raisins and spices.  

Pumpkin2Cmed

When I buy the candied ginger, I actually have to hide it from Himself. It’s like crack. Or maybe cryptonite, that and australian black licorice.  Ok! On to the bread – this is another of those one-bowl wonders, and is really quick. 

Pumpkin4Cmed
See what I’m saying? Hell, the piece of candied ginger looks more orange than this bread. Stupid pumpkin.

 

I hope you try this, and use good pumpkin! This would be equally tasty with an equivalent amount of grated fresh zucchini in place of the pumpkin. 

Pumpkin3Cmed

I love this glaze, too. It’s the usual orange zest/juice with icing sugar and the loverly addition of some more of that pumpkin pie spice. This is a scrumptious fall treat – I hope you try it!
Ingredients
For the batter
2 c sugar
2 c pumpkin puree
2/3 c veg oil
4 eggs
2 tsp vanilla
3 c AP flour
4 tsp. baking powder
2 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
½ c raisins
¼ c minced candied ginger
for the topping
zest & juice of half an orange
2 Tbsp water
1.5-2 c. powdered sugar
½ tsp pumpkin pie spice
¼ c. minced candied ginger to garnish

Instructions
Spray the bottom of each loaf pan and line it with parchment. Preheat oven to 350*.
Throw everything but the ginger/raisins In the mixer bowl with the paddle, give it a whirl on medium until it’s all mixed. Add the ginger/raisins and give a quick spin to mix them in.
Divide the batter between the pans.
Bake 50-60m. until a tester comes out clean. Cool to just warm, then remove from the pans.
While they are cooling, mix together the glaze. It should be the consistency of thin pancake batter. When they are just warm to your palm, pour half the glaze of the tops of the loaves and use a pastry brush to spread it all over, including the sides. Next, drizzle the remaining glaze and sprinkle the tops with the garnish candied ginger.
Cool completely before slicing.
By Karen Maginnis
Adapted from Betty Crocker’s Best of Baking (MacMillan, 1997)
serves 16
calories 364
fat 11g
cholesterol 47mg
sodium 23mg
carbs 64g
-fiber 2g
-sugars 42g
protein 5g