Monday, March 12, 2012

Blueberry Nut Loaf

Feeling a little overwhelmed today after the crazy busy weekend I decided to make some warm comfort bread.  We still have bags of frozen blueberries from the summer in our freezer.  I pulled out my better homes and Gardens cook book for a basic recipe and tweaked it for a healthier spin.  I found a recipe for blueberry nut bread and decided to run with it.  I made sum substitutions and was pleased witht he results, and the kids even like it.

11/2 cups AP flour
11/2 cups whole wheat flour  
1 cup sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1-2 teaspoon lemon zest, depending on preference
1 beaten egg
1 cup milk
2/3 to 1 cup cupmilk kefir (depending on thickness; can also use yogurt, sour cream or regular milk)
3 tablespoons melted coconut oil 
1 heaping cup of blueberries (frozen or fresh)
1/2 cup chopped walnuts (reserve half for topping)
1 tablespoons sugar (for topping)

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Grease 1 large or 2 small loaf pans.
3. Mix dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl and create a well in the center. (flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, lemon zest)
4. Mix wet ingredients in separate mixing bowl.  (egg, milk, kefir, coconut oil)
5. Pour wet ingredients into well of dry ingredients and gently mix until moistened, batter should still be lumpy.
6. Gently fold in blueberries and nuts (reserving 1/2 the nuts for the top)
7. Pour into greased loaf pan/s and top with leftover walnuts and 1 tablespoon sugar
8. bake in oven for 1 hour (or until a toothpick stuck into the center of the loaf comes out clean)

Variation Suggestions:       Cranberry Nut Bread- replace lemon zest with orange zest, blueberries with coarsely chopped cranberries and walnuts with almonds.
Apple Nut Bread-replace lemon zest with cinnamon and blueberries with coarsely chopped apple slices.
Banana Nut Bread-replace lemon zest with 1 teaspoon vanilla extract (incorporate into wet ingredients) and blueberries with chopped banana slices.
Peach Nut Bread-replace lemon zest with 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg or allspice, blueberries with diced peaches (fresh or canned) and walnuts with pecans.

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