Last night was painful. Let me explain why. My husband is having a brunch at work and asked what he could bring so I suggested making a sweet bread of some sort. After thinking about the obvious banana bread, the tasty (but kind of out-of-season) blueberry bread, we agreed on the orange bread. So I turned on my awesome “Decemberists” station on Pandora and started baking. The smell of orange zest was fabulous and, although the recipe called for a hand-mixer, I did the entire recipe the old fashion way (a whisk and arm muscles). I had my pretty apron on and a crisp cider to sip on. It was a good night. But that was up until I realized that my husband would be taking the whole loaf to work! The Horror!! How was I going to enjoy my latest baked good?? With cupcakes or cookies, it’s easy to just grab one and pretend like it was never there but having a missing end on a loaf of bread isn’t quite as subtle. So I resigned. Hopefully they will love it. And my husband suggested making another one over the weekend that we could eat at home. I might just have to do that. 🙂
So, in any case, here’s the recipe: (From Simply Recipes)
– 1/3 cup butter
– 3/4 cup sugar
– 2 eggs
– 1 tbsp orange zest
– 2 cups all-purpose flour
– 1 tsp baking soda
– 1 tsp baking powder
– 1/4 tsp salt
– 1/4 tsp cinnamon
– 1 cup plain yogurt
– 1/2 cup golden raisins, chopped (I didn’t put the raisins but it’s in the original recipe)
Optional Glaze: (I didn’t do it this time but I’ve made it before and it was delicious)
– 1 teaspoon lemon juice
– 1 teaspoon orange juice
– 1/3 cup powdered sugar
1. Butter a 4X8-inch loaf pan. To make it easier to remove the loaf from the pan, you may want to lay down a wide strip of parchment paper, along the length of the bottom of the loaf pan, and up the narrow sides. Butter this as well.
2. Beat the butter until smooth, with an electric mixer or a whisk.
3. Add the sugar and beat. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating until completely incorporated after each addition. Add the orange zest.
4. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt and cinnamon.
5. Add the yogurt and dry ingredients by thirds, starting with the yogurt, alternating the additions. Beat only until just incorporated. Mix in the golden raisins.
6. Immediately pour batter into prepared loaf pan. Place in the middle rack of 350°F oven. Bake for 45-50 minutes, until skewer comes out clean.
7. While the loaf is cooling, prepare the optional glaze, if using. Whisk together the lemon juice, orange juice and powdered sugar until smooth and there are no lumps. Place loaf on a serving plate. Use a toothpick or skinny skewer to poke holes in the top of the loaf and drizzle the glaze over the loaf.
Voilà! This is a fairly easy baking recipe and the result is amazing. It’s sweet, and fresh, and perfect all around.