Sunday, January 30, 2011

Quick Breads Make Quick Breakfasts

I was browsing through my pantry the other day and came across three quarts of applesauce that I canned last year. I took a trip to Yakima and bought a big box of apples (only 25 cents a pound!) and brought them home with me from that trip. I remember that weekend. It was a sunny, crisp fall day on the eastern side of the Cascade Mountains. I put a lot of work into peeling the apples and cooking them slowly on the hot stove into applesauce. So, why haven't I eaten it yet!?? I'm guessing I haven't because I prize the applesauce so much I don't want to eat it until it's absolutely the right time. They are like golden lanterns on my shelf and I only canned three quarts not ten and so they are precious. However, they've been sitting pretty too long. I'd say the last week of January is just as good as any to bring a little sunshine back into the dead of winter! That was, after all, what I was intending when I canned them last fall in the first place, to use them in the winter when locally grown fruit is not abundant.

One terrific way to use applesauce is in baking. Many bakers use it as a substitute for sugar or to add moisture. I flipped through several pages of my baking books and decided to make an applesauce quick bread. I'm sure many of you have had pumpkin bread or banana or zucchini bread. These are all quick breads. They may take an hour to bake in the oven but they are very easy to put together (you can do it in less than 15 minutes) and before you know it your house will smell wonderfully and you will be so excited to get the first hot slice right out of the oven. I made applesauce bread last weekend and it was a huge success. I used a 9x5 inch bread pan to bake it in and each day in the morning I sliced a piece of the applesauce bread, toasted it, and spread cream cheese on the top to have as a simple, week day breakfast. Seriously, who needs pop tarts or expensive cereals when you can have homemade bread in the morning instead!? If you have extra bread left over, like I did, you can freeze it and eat it at a later time or you can use it on the weekends to make french toast or bread pudding. What I liked about making my applesauce bread is all I needed to have in my kitchen were some very basic ingredients (flour, sugar, oil, eggs, etc) to make a good breakfast. That means when I go back to the grocery store this week I can rely more on buying the basics rather than having to buy all the expensive foods in the middle aisles. Give baking a try. This is a good basic recipe to try reintroducing baking into your life. Enjoy!

Spiced Applesauce Walnut Quick Bread
  • 1 1/4 cups applesauce
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 tablespoons milk
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease a 9x5 inch loaf pan. In a large bowl, combine the applesauce, sugar, oil, eggs and milk; beat well. Sift the flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice and salt; stir until smooth. Fold in the walnuts. Pour batter into prepared loaf pan. Bake in preheated oven for 60 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into center of the loaf comes out clean.


  1. That sounds delicious! I am going try and bake some. First I need to get a bread loaf pan! Thanks for the inspiration!

  2. You're welcome. Just so you know, you can freeze bananas if you have them (ripe ones) and use them later in banana bread so they don't go to waste.