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Quick breads for quick satisfaction

Jen Klein is a New England-based technical writer and mother of three. When she isn't asking her kids to stop bickering, "caramelizing" the dinner or actively ignoring the dust bunnies under the couch, she enjoys knitting, gardening, pho...

Homemade bread - quick!

Quick breads are just as the name implies - quick to make. Leavened with baking powder or baking soda instead of yeast, quick breads can be ready in an hour - or less - and are just as homey as their yeasty counterparts. Think about banana bread and corn bread - both delicious quick breads. Breakfast treats such a biscuits, muffins, pancakes and scones also technically fall into the quick bread category, but there's something about the home-baked goods that come in a loaf format - something yummy.

Zucchini bread

Quick breads from scratch are simple recipes

While there are many quick bread mixes available in boxes in the baking aisle at the local market, they only shave a little time off the making of a special treat. You can have more fun making quick breads from scratch, and it's just as easy as a mix, truly.

Making a quick bread batter more closely resembles making a cake batter, though there are a few bread-specific things to remember. First of all, the texture will depend on how much you mix the batter. It's best to be light on the mixing, and do it by hand. A very fine crumb may be great for a cake, but it's not necessarily what one expects in a bread.

Quick bread recipes

Dried Fruit Quick Bread

Makes 1 loaf

This basic recipe is great for experimentation. You can alter the ingredients every time you make it for a fresh flavor experience. Before you get started, here are some suggestions for additions:

  • Chopped dried apricots and almonds
  • Dried apple
  • Dried blueberries
  • Dried cranberries and cashews
  • Dried mango and macadamia nuts
  • Dried cherries and walnuts

Ingredients:
1/2 to 1 cup dried fruit and nuts, fruits slightly reconstituted with boiling water or hot fruit juice, and drained
2 cups all purpose flour (you can use a mixture of white and wheat if you'd like)
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup honey
1/4 cup canola oil
1 egg

Directions:
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Prepare a loaf pan with cooking spray. Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and cinnamon in a large bowl. Whisk well. In a separate bowl, combine the buttermilk, honey, canola oil and egg until well blended.

2. Make a well in the middle of the dry ingredients. Pour in the wet ingredients and bring together with swift but gentle strokes. Try not to over mix. Add the dried fruits and nuts until just combined. Scrape into the loaf pan. Bake about 50 minutes. A cake tester should come out clean. Allow to cool a few minutes before turning out of the pan. Finish cooling on a cooling rack.

Zucchini bread

Makes 1 loaf

Ingredients:
1 1/2 cups flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1-1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 egg
3/4 cup vegetable oil
1 cup and 2 tablespoons sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup grated zucchini
2/3 cup and 1 tablespoon chopped walnuts

Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Prepare a loaf pan with cooking spray. Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and cinnamon in a large bowl. Whisk well. In another bowl, combine egg, oil and sugar until well blended. Add the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients and mix well.

2. Add the zucchini and walnuts to the batter and stir until just combined. Scrape into the loaf pan. Bake about 50 to 60 minutes. A cake tester should come out clean. Allow to cool a few minutes before turning out of the pan - finish cooling on a cooling rack.

Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Quick bread

Makes 1 loaf

Ingredients:
2 cups all purpose flour
1 cup rolled oats
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1/2 cup miniature chocolate chips
1 1/2 cups buttermilk
2 large eggs
1/4 cup melted butter

Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Butter and flour a loaf pan. In a large bowl, combine the flour, oats, sugars, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, salt, walnuts and chocolate chips. Mix well. In another bowl, whisk together the buttermilk, eggs and melted butter.

2. Make a well in the middle of the dry ingredients. Pour in the wet ingredients and bring together with swift but gentle strokes. All the dry ingredients should be moistened, but the batter will be a little lumpy. Scrape into the loaf pan. Bake about 50 minutes. A cake tester should come out clean. Allow to cool a few minutes before turning out of the pan. Finish cooling on a cooling rack.

More quick bread recipes

Spiced Bran Quick Bread
Cocoa Banana Bread
Honey Peanut Steamed Tea Bread

 

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