Who invented quick breads? I really need to know so I can thank that person! Quick breads are versatile, easy to make, and come together more quick-ly and with less effort than traditional bread. Quick breads require none of the yeast, rising, or kneading that traditional breads do. They also keep well (up to six months) in the freezer, though I have never made one that makes it to the freezing part. 😉 I have been making them for a little over a year now and there is no dearth of ingredients that can be used…herbs, cheeses, fruits, spices, nuts…the list goes on. The bread featured today is a sweet one, but not too sweet. It is dense and moist, with juicy berries and a glaze that is just right. This is one of my go-to quick breads to make for others because it also looks amazing. It makes a for nice dessert or can accompany bacon and eggs as a breakfast pastry. I love it and so does my family. I hope you will too.
Note: I sometimes employ frozen vegetables or fruits in my recipes to save time and money. I don’t recommend doing so here. Using fresh, ripe berries is paramount to the success of this bread. The lemon zest and glaze add a tartness that needs to be balanced by sweet fruit. If you must use frozen berries in this recipe, be sure to thaw and drain them well so that there is no excess liquid to make the bread mushy.
For the bread:
Handful of (about 6) ripe strawberries, cut lengthwise into quarters
About 12 ripe blackberries
1 cup sugar
3/4 cup melted butter
3/4 cup plus two teaspoons milk (I have used almond or evaporated milk with success)
1/4 cup oil (I use olive)
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
1 additional rounded teaspoon of flour
For the glaze:
Juice of 1 fresh lemon
1 teaspoon lemon zest
2 cups powdered sugar
2 teaspoons milk (optional)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, whisk sugar, butter, milk, oil, flour, baking soda, and egg together. Add zest and vanilla. The batter should be thick. In another bowl, dredge the berries in the additional teaspoon of flour. This will keep them from sinking to the bottom of the pan while baking. Gently fold the berries into the batter so that they do not break.
Pour batter into a small loaf pan (I use a nonstick, 8.5 x 4.5 x 2.5 one by Wilton). If you are not using a non-stick pan, be sure to spray yours with a non-stick cooking spray or grease and flour it. Bake for one hour and five minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the loaf comes out clean. To prevent excessive browning and splitting of the top of your loaf, fold a piece of aluminum foil in half and place it over the top of the pan like a tent, about 15 minutes into baking. Meanwhile, prepare the glaze by mixing lemon juice, zest, and powdered sugar in a small bowl with a whisk. If this glaze is too thick, add milk, one teaspoon at a time to achieve a syrup-like consistency.
Once the loaf is finished baking, run a butter knife around the edges to loosen it then cool in pan for an hour. After cooling, flip pan over and gently tap and shake the loaf out. (If you plan to freeze this loaf, seal it in an airtight container and do not glaze it until thawing.) Drizzle glaze over top of loaf in desired pattern, slice, and serve.
P.S. There will be extra glaze. If you are like me, you will add a bit of it to each slice. Don’t feel bad about this.
Please ask any questions and leave reviews below. Thanks for reading!