Mackers called me up a few weeks back and wanted me to come over and bake a whole bunch of apple bread. I’d never done such a thing before, and I am all for baking with my girlfriends, so I agreed. We spent HOURS upon HOURS baking this bread, and I don’t think either of us were pleased with the results. Maybe it had to do with the fact that there ended up being big chunks of apple in the bread. Maybe it was because we had to cook the bread for twice as long as specified so that it wasn’t gooey in the middle. Maybe it was because the second round of baking resulted in Mystery Smoking coming from her oven. Maybe it was because neither one of us knew what we were doing.
I think the last one is the right one.
Anyway, it was fun, and I came away with several ideas of different things to try when next I made apple bread, if I ever did. The Man was not fond of the idea of apple bread. He thought it sounded “gross”. But, the Northern Spys were picked at my local orchard, and I thought NOW is the time to try it again.
Mackers had said that she thought that the next time she made apple bread, she’d just adapt her zucchini bread recipe, so I went to my cookbooks and found a zucchini bread recipe of my very own. It’s from Betty Crocker, so you know it’s good! And now, I know it’s good because I made a loaf and had many different people eat some of it. And they all loved it. So, I am fairly confident that you will love it, too.
You will need:
- 5-6 medium baking apples (enough to end up with 3 cups of shredded apple). As I said, I used Northern Spys, but those are not available all the year round, so just find something that’s good to bake with. I would stay away from the very tart kinds, like Granny Smiths.
- 1 2/3 cups sugar
- 2/3 cup vegetable oil
- 2 tsp. vanilla
- 4 large eggs
- 3 cups all purpose (or whole wheat) flour
- 2 tsp. baking soda
- 1 tsp. salt
- 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp. ground cloves
- 1/2 tsp. baking powder
You can also add
- 1/2 cup coarsely chopped nuts
- 1/2 cup raisins
if you want to. I left them out because I do not like nuts in my baked goods, and The Man is not a raisin fan.
Put your oven rack toward the bottom of your oven – y0u want to position it so the top of your loaf pan will be in the center of your oven. Preheat your oven to 350 F. Grease the BOTTOM ONLY of a 9x5x3 loaf pan.
Shred the apples. I used a grater. It was messy. I would recommend shredding into something that has a lip on it, like a baking sheet, to prevent juice from running all over the counter. I also kind of wrung out the shredded apple a little just to get rid of most of the juice before mixing it into the batter. I was worried about it being too wet. The apple oxidizes (turns brown) pretty quickly after it’s shredded, but this doesn’t affect the flavor. You also won’t be able to see brown apples in the finished product, so don’t fret over it.
Mix the apples, sugar, oil, eggs, and vanilla in a large bowl. Mix the dry ingredients in another bowl. When you’re ready, dump the dry ingredients into the wet and combine. Don’t overmix it. Just stir until it comes together, then let it sit for five minutes, like you would with muffins.
Pour the batter into the loaf pan and bake for 1 hour 10 minutes to 1 hour 20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes in the pan, then loosen the sides and remove to finish cooling on a wire rack.
Once cooled, wrap it up tightly. It stores well-wrapped at room temperature for four days or in the fridge for ten days.
Share and enjoy!