For new bakers, quick breads are a great place to start because they don’t involve messy frostings or fondants, the only equipment you really need is a loaf pan and a wooden spoon or mixer and the recipes are usually not overly complicated – just a couple of steps.
For more advanced bakers, quick breads are fun because there is a lot of room for trial and error.
This recipe can be adapted with your favorite fresh fruits – pears, berries – anything that’s in season or looks good at the market.
My love affair with quick breads started in first grade, when my mother and I made boxed quick bread for my class Thanksgiving party.
It somehow became a tradition and I would whip up a loaf of cranberry bread from the ubiquitous blue box every year, until I realized that I could achieve an even better outcome with fresh cranberries and a little bit of orange zest.
Of course, cranberry bread is one of those seasonal foods that it would just seem wrong to eat outside of November or December, which is why my quick bread repertoire has expanded to include peanut butter banana bread and healthier zucchini bread.
And now, an apple walnut version that you can enjoy from now right up until cranberry bread season.
- 1 cup chopped, peeled apple
- 1½ cup all-purpose flour
- ½ cup old-fashioned rolled oats (not quick-cooking or steel-cut)
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
- 1 cup sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- ¾ cup walnuts, separated into ½ cup and ¼ cup
- Preheat the oven to 325°. Grease loaf pan with butter or cooking spray. In a large bowl, combine the flour, oats, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg in a small bowl. In separate bowl, whisk together the sugar, eggs, buttermilk, and vanilla.
- Add the liquids to the dry ingredients and stir gently until flour is completely combine into the liquid. Fold the apples and ½ cup walnuts into the batter.Pour the batter into the greased loaf pan and top bake for 50 - 60 minutes, rotating the pan partway through. The loaf is done when the top is puffed and dry, and when a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.
- Let the loaf cool in the pan for 10 minutes before removing. Allow it to cool completely before slicing. Makes 1 loaf/12 slices.