Apricot Almond Bread
Used with permission from the new cookbook
A Taste of Canada by Rose Murray
Alterations should be made to fit with your dietary needs. Please
consult with your medical team before you attempt to make this recipe.
Apricot Almond Bread Makes 1 loaf
½ cup butter, softened
¾ cup granulated sugar
½ tsp almond extract
½ tsp vanilla
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt
¾ cup milk
1 cup chopped dried apricots
¾ cup slivered almonds, chopped and toasted
¼ cup icing sugar
1 tbsp almond liqueur*
1 tbsp water
- Line a 9- x 5-inch (2 L) loaf pan with parchment paper
- In a large bowl, cream the butter, then beat in the sugar until fluffy
- Beat in the eggs, one at a time. Stir in the almond extract and vanilla
- In a separate bowl, stir together the flour, baking powder and salt
- Stir into the butter mixture alternately with the milk, making 3 additions of dry ingredients and 2 of milk
- Fold in the apricots and almonds
- Spoon into the prepared pan and bake in the centre of a 350°F (180°C) oven until a cake tester inserted in the centre comes out clean, about 1 hour and 10 minutes
- Let cool in the pan on a rack for 5 minutes
- For the glaze, stir together the icing sugar, almond liqueur and water
- Slowly pour over the bread and let sit 10 minutes longer
- Remove the loaf from the pan, carefully peel off the paper and cool completely on the rack
- Wrap well in plastic wrap and store for 24 hours before slicing
- (The loaf will keep at room temperature for up to 3 days. Or wrap foil over the plastic wrap and store in the freezer for up to 2 weeks.)
- *If you prefer, use 2 tbsp (25 mL) water and ½ tsp (2 mL) almond extract instead of 1 tbsp (15 mL) each almond liqueur and water.
Quick breads or tea breads, sophisticated versions of Canada’s earliest quick bread, bannock, were great favourites in the 1920s when they were often made with dates, raisins and other dried fruits as they became available. They were thinly sliced and buttered, appearing with tea, in lunch boxes and on bazaar bake tables. These loaves are still popular because they’re so quick and easy to make. Start with this simple batter, succulent apricots and the ever-favourite almond flavour for the first tea bread; then make a few substitutions to create the Cranberry Walnut Loaf and Tangerine Date Loaf variations. They are all sure to be popular as lovely treats to have on hand for afternoon tea or a leisurely breakfast.
Cranberry Walnut Loaf
Substitute 2 tsp (10 mL) grated lemon zest and ¼ tsp (1 mL) cinnamon for the almond extract, chopped raw cranberries for the apricots and toasted chopped walnuts for the almonds. For the glaze, use 2 tbsp (25 mL) fresh lemon juice as the liquid.
Tangerine Date Loaf
Substitute 4 tsp (20 mL) grated tangerine zest for the almond extract, chopped dates for the apricots and toasted chopped pecans for the almonds. Substitute 1 tsp (5 mL) baking soda for half the baking powder (i.e., use 1 tsp/5 mL each) and tangerine juice for the milk. For the glaze, use 2 tbsp (25 mL) tangerine juice as the liquid and add 1 tbsp (15 mL) grated tangerine zest.
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