Monday, October 5, 2009

Apple-Walnut Loaf

Autumn means fresh apples. Yum! I got some apple trees for Mother's day a few years back and this is the first year I've gotten a real crop. Don't they look beautiful?

I still don't have quite enough to be worth preserving, so we've been enjoying fresh apple recipes. Here's a good bread that we had the other night.

1 Tbsp active dry yeast
2 Tbsp light brown sugar
1 cup warm water
1 cup warm milk
5 1/2 to 6 1/2 cups flour (it can all be white, but I do 2 cups whole wheat)
2 medium-large tart cooking apples, peeled, cored, and chopped (2-3 cups)
1/2 cup dried fruit (I use craisins)
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
2 Tbsp oil (walnut is fantastic, but other kinds are fine)
2 large eggs, at room temperature
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground mace
1/2 tsp ground allspice
1 Tbsp salt

1. In large bowl using whisk (or a heavy duty mixer) combine the yeast, brown sugar, warm water, warm milk, and 1 cup white and 1 cup wheat flour. Beat until smooth, about 1 minute. Cover the bowl loosely with plastic wrap and let stand at room temperature until foamy, about 1 hour.

2. Add the apples, craisins, walnuts, oil, eggs, cinnamon, mace, allspice, salt, and 1 cup wheat flour. Beat until creamy, about 2 minutes. Add the remaining flour 1/2 cup at a time, until a soft dough is formed. It will be difficult to stir, but needs to remain "sticky". The trick to good bread is to keep the dough slightly stickier than you think it should be. Using wheat will decrease the flour by just a little. I used about 5 3/4 cups.

3. turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and knead until smooth and springy yet firm, dusting with small amounts of flour as necessary.

4. Place the dough in a greased deep container. Turn the dough once to coat the top and cover with plastic wrap. Let rise at room temperature until doubled (1 1/2 to 2 hours)

5. Gently deflate dough. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface. Grease two 9x5 loaf pans. Shape into loaves. Let rise in pans until tops are an inch above rim of pan (about 45 minutes).

6. Bake at 350 for 45- 50 minutes.

Original recipe from The Fresh Loaf
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Madeline and Family said...

Congratulations on the apple trees. I bet that is so much fun! Your Apple-Walnut loaf looks and sounds perfect for the fall.

The Danaraj Family said...

Oh Alison, this bread looks so good! We just went apple picking this weekend, so I will have to try your bread this week. Thanks! ~Amanda

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