s noted in my previous entry, I love Fall. I love everything about it. The smell and feel of the crisp air, the crunching of the leaves underneath my boots, the beautiful changing colors of the leaves...sigh. Fall is wonderful and my fondest memories are from this season. Fall is also apple picking season which inevitably leads to apple desserts and baked goods. I'm not a huge cooked apple fan, I think the texture is too grainy/weird/mushy for my liking. Apple pie fans are shaking their heads in disappointment, I know. But! I love love apple loafs! Related to the pumpkin/banana/zucchinni bread family (I'm just assuming), apple loafs are often overlooked. I haven't seen them around much, certainly not in cafes or coffee shops, but they are one of my favorites and I've been making them for the last two years, this year making it three, thus (in my book), a new Fall tradition. Below is the absolute best recipe and it's pretty fool-proof. This recipe is from recipe.com, but for some reason it's no longer there! Good thing I wrote it down!
Autumn Apple Loaf
1 1/2 stick of unsalted butter (room temperature)
1 2/3 cup of sugar
2 eggs, beaten (room temperature)
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 cups of all purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon of salt
1 teaspoon of baking powder
2 cups of peeled and chopped apples
Optional: 1 cup of chopped walnuts, raisins, etc.
Cream together the butter, sugar, eggs and vanilla until light and fluffy. Mix the other dry ingredients in a bowl and sift with a fork. Add the wet mixture to the dry one. Add apples and whatever else you want to include, walnuts, etc. Pour into a greased loaf pan and fill it to about 3/4 high and bake at 350 degrees for about 40-45 minutes. Make sure to test it to see if it's fully cooked. Use a toothpick and pierce the loaf at the thickest part. If the toothpick comes out clean, it's done. If not, it needs a few more minutes. The top of the loaf will turn a golden brown.
I usually chop the apples into small pieces since I don't really want to feel them. This time I made them slightly chunkier and I actually like it! Also, I added 10 more minutes to the bake, since it seemed to take a bit longer than usual. The top of this loaf comes out very crispy and the inside is very soft and moist. It's the best!