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Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Okanagan Apple Bread and the San Juan Islands - Outdoor Wednesday










Tucked between Puget Sound and the Straits of Georgia is an archipelago known as the San Juan Islands. The islands are accessible only by ferry and they've become the quiet place to which I retreat when the world is too much with me. There are 172 islands in the chain, but only a few are inhabited and some are not visible at high tide. In the spring and summer these islands are coves of stunning beauty, particularly at sunrise and sunset when the view rivals the majesty of a cathedral and the silence, broken only by the gentle lapping of waves, becomes an evensong. Life here moves slowly and you can, indeed, lose yourself in solitary splendor if that is what you seek. Food is simple and what you don't grow or raise must be ferried in at some expense. One of our favorite treats on the islands is an apple bread that comes from the Okanagan Valley in British Columbia. It's farm bread at its best. It can be made without special equipment and it falls into that easy but delicious category of old-fashioned quick breads. I love its simplicity. I use Golden Delicious Apples and coarsely chopped walnuts to make the bread, but feel free to improvise and use choices of your own. Here's the recipe.

Okanagan Apple Bread...from the kitchen of One Perfect Bite

Ingredients:

2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon cloves
1/4 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup butter, room temperature
3/4 cup light or golden brown sugar
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup peeled, grated apple
1/2 cup buttermilk
3/4 cup toasted walnuts or pecans, coarsely chopped

Directions:
1) Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 1-pound loaf pan. Set aside.
2) Sift all-purpose flour, baking soda, salt, nutmeg, cinnamon, cloves and whole wheat flour together. In a separate bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs. Add vanilla. Add dry ingredients, alternating with grated apples and buttermilk, to egg mixture. Fold in toasted nuts. Scrape into loaf pan.
3) Bake in lower third of oven for 1 hour. or until a cake taster inserted in center of loaf comes out clean. Let sit for 10 minutes. Turn on a wire rack to cool. Yield: 1 loaf.

This recipe is being linked to Outdoor Wednesday, an event sponsored by Susan at A Southern Daydreamer.

58 comments :

Ebie said...

I love the peace and tranquility of the place. All your shots are beautiful, just a perfect place for a getaway!

Ebie's Outdoor Wednesday.

Foley said...

What gorgeous photos..looks like a beautiful place. The apple bread also looks delicious..with all the fall apples I'm on the lookout for apple recipes!!

girlichef said...

This sounds perfectly delicious...and those photos...ahhhh...wish u were here moment! Okay, wish I was there moment is more like it ;D

My Little Space said...

You know what! The bread is as beautiful as the pictures...Those photos are really really gorgeous!

claudie said...

Mary, I married my hubby in Vancouver 21 years ago. My 3 children were all born there. We lived in Kelona for a year, but our home was in White Rock, B.C.
I know all about the San Juan Islands..
Isn't it magical? I miss it all.
Thanks for the memories, and your pictures are just breathtaking.
Happy OW Mary
Love Claudie
xoxoxo

Light and Voices said...

Your photos that you posted this week look so peaceful. Just lovely images. Thanks so much for sharing the apple bread recipe. I plan on trying it soon.
Joyce M

Alicia said...

Love the sunsets! and I will have to try that apple recipe...once the temperature gets to below 100 here...lol.

Please come by for my first (and last) poetry reading about the Hippy Bees...lol.

Thanks for sharing!

Pam said...

I still have never been to the San Jaun Islands - I need to change that. Beautiful pictures Mary...beautiful bread too.

Regina said...

I enjoyed such lovely scenes.
Wonderful post! and the recipe of course.

Lisa said...

The pictures are just breathtaking!

KathyB. said...

I have lived in Washington for 3 decades now and never visited the San Juan Islands. I must do that soon.

The apple bread recipe is one I can use right away...we have apples ripening in the orchard, indeed, many of them are falling daily....a perfect autumn quick bread.

Debinhawaii said...

Beautiful pictures--I miss Seattle. The San Juans are so gorgeous. The bread looks delicious too.

Bits of Taste said...

Hi Mary, these is so gorgeous! The sceneries are awesome, and also the Apple bread!

Martha said...

We've not been there but your pictures are beautiful. Love apple bread as well and may have to make some -- great for breakfast or tea.

luna miranda said...

the sunset is spectacular, all these photos make me long for a quiet vacation.

SnoWhite said...

awesome photos and great looking apple bread :)

Katherine Aucoin said...

Your lovely photos took me away. Another beautiful loaf of bread.

Bonnie said...

I love apple bread. I can't wait to try this recipe. Your photos are amazing.

Heidi said...

What a lovely post, the food looks great, and the pictures are lovely.

Blessings,
Heidi

rosecottagegardensandfarm said...

Hi Mary,

It is a gorgeous early fall week -- so your apple bread will be perfect to try! Thanks for sharing the recipe. Persumably, it should be a soft apple rather than a chunky or a crisp apple? I am thinking that different apple varieties will give the bread different performance.

Your photo images of the San Juan Islands are gorgeous. My daughter lives two blocks or so from the sound...your photos really miss her today!

Have a lovely week!

Debbykay @ Rose Cottage Gardens and Farm

Mary said...

Claudie, I'm always amazed by how we are all tied together is some fashion by the places we have been and the people we have met. I'm so glad the photos brought back pleasant memories. The islands are magical. I wish everyone could experience them just once. I, by the way, love Vancouver, and it's melting pot atmosphere. Perhaps next time we head to the islands I could give you a call. Have a wonderful day. Hugs...Mary

Mary said...

Debbie, by all means feel free to experiment with the apples you use in the bread. That will make less a difference here than is some other recipes because the apples are grated. Nutmeats can also be varied, but I think toasting is important.

ChrisC and JonJ said...

loved the photos,but when I got to the bread recipe you had me!I definitely have to try that one!

Cottage Sisters said...

Your pictures are beautiful, great job!

Riet said...

Again such beautiful pictures and a great recipe. Thank you for sharing and have a nice day

bj said...

OOO, Mary...can't tell you how thrilled I am to find this apple bread on this very day that I am making all kinds of things with the fresh apples we picked yesterday. I just this minute took out a fresh apple cake with praline sauce...Can not WAIT to try it...
NOW, I was wanting to take a friend something made with these apples (o, and I hope Pink Lady's are ok in this bread recipe..) so I will make your bread and take to her. Thanks so much for the recipe.

Your "get away" place just takes my breath away...How blessed you are to have this place for your soul to rest!
xo bj

Terry said...

What lovely pictures Mary. You must do a lot of traveling.

I love apple bread, cake, pies....Isn't it the american way? Your recipe sounds great.

Terry said...

I don't know if my first comment got through but I am going to try agin.

Your pictures are wonderful, You must do an awful lot of traveling.

Diann @ The Thrifty Groove said...

What amazing pictures! So beautiful! And your apple bread recipe look so good and different than standard apple bread. Everytime I visit here I end up adding another recipe to my recipe file!

Tammy518 said...

What breathtaking pictures! And that apple bread looks so good. I'm all about easy, so I may give it a try.

daylily777 said...

WOW, Stunning beauty is right. Thanks so much for sharing . The apple bread looks delish. I love anything made with apples . 8-)
~Myrna

Baba's Special Babies said...

Hi Mary, I can see why you would want to visit this place often.. a relaxing and mind refreshing retreat!!!The apple bread sounds great..thanks for sharing all of this with us today.Hugs, Baba

Katherinellen said...

Breathtaking and Beautiful! Would love to sit on the porch with the scenery like that....with a cup of coffee with your Apple Bread ..Thanks for sharing the recipe...Happy Outdoor!Katherinelllen

The Blonde Duck said...

I could stare at those islands and eat that bread all day...

Susan said...

What beautiful bread. I am also glad to read your opinion on apple choices. I have not conquered the complex variety of apples yet, though I have tried. Glad you like the Goldens for baking. I like them also. The pictures are beautiful. I love the Oregon, Washington coasts and we so enjoyed our time in Vancouver and Vancouver Island. Beautiful part of the world.

Pam said...

Hi Mary,
your photos are pure perfection and your apple bread sounds like a delightful bite...
Thanks for stopping by,
Pam :)

Ms. Bake-it said...

What gorgeous photos Mary! It looks like a beautiful place. The apple bread sounds delicious! I will have to make some when I make apple pie this weekend! Thanks for sharing!

Thank you for stopping by.

~ Tracy

Karen at Nittany Inspirations said...

I love that one picture that looks so misty. It's worthy of being hung on the wall. The apple bread looks delicious.

storyteller said...

Oh my ... what glorious outdoor watery views you've shared today and what DELICIOUS looking Apple Bread!!! I've just returned home from my Power Point class and could DO with a slice right now, but methinks I'll settle for apple slices, cheese, and a bit of chicken with the multi-grain bread I have on hand. Thanks for visiting my outdoor watery posts at both Sacred Ruminations and Happily Retired Gal today ;--)
Hugs and blessings,

Wandering Chopsticks said...

The San Juan Islands look so peaceful and gorgeous. I was so tempted to take a job in Bellingham to be near such scenery.

Pat @ Mille Fiori Favoriti said...

The San Juan islands look so beautiful and serene. The sunsets photos are spectacular.

I enjoy making dessert bread this time of the year. I'll try your delicious recipe!

Queen B. said...

simply amazing photos !!

LV said...

What I would have given to have been on that rip and eating good apple bread.

Natashya KitchenPuppies said...

What breathtaking photos -so serene.
I have never been there, but I have been to the Okanagan - such a beautiful place.
I love the apple bread. I am looking forward to my annual trip to the local orchard/market this weekend.

Lori said...

These shots are absolutely beautiful. THe colors are magnificent. You have such captivating shots Mary.

SmilingSally said...

Anything made with apples and cinnamon has to be good!

Although our house should be finished by Christmas, I am not planning to decorate. It's be too much this year.

Mumzie said...

Wow! Mary these are great photos, and what a wonderful place to visit. I'm going to try your apple bread, looks delicious! Thanks for visiting and have a Great Outdoor Wednesday. Mumzie

Leigh of Bloggeritaville said...

Oh, Mary! What beautiful photos and I love the history with the recipe! The place looks magical and the food, delish! Mary, iwsh I could have you cook for me! Smile!
Thanks for dropping by Bloggeritaville! I appreciate your visits and your friendship!

Bridgett said...

Oh wow, your photos are stellar...absolutely breathtaking.

ellen b. said...

Oh Mary, these photos are so gorgeous. I love each one and that bread looks so good. You are making me so homesick for the Northwest...good thing I'm flying there on Friday night for a week!!

Bella said...

Your pictures are stunning. And the bread sounds delicious, too.

JLS Hall (Joysweb) said...

Once again, you've come up with a place I want to visit and a recipe I have to try! The apple bread sounds very much like my grandmother's applesauce cake, so I'm sure I'll love it. Thanks for another great Outdoor Wednesday post.

food with style said...

oh these pics are beyond gorgeous... and the fog streaming over the island, be still my heart...

Katy ~ said...

Your scenic photos are breath taking. I can feel and see the calm.

Love apple recipes. This one looks divine.

petite nyonya said...

Stunning photos. I can feel pure serenity & peacefulness just by looking at these pictures!

Becky K. said...

Mary,
Those photos are stunning. How restful and artistic all at once.

Becky K.

Maria Berg said...

It looks like cream around the islands - I want to eat them. It is the second time I start to red you blog and find so many things that I only read a bite and then go away to see something else. But I seen the blue moon and the wonderful hats.

Take care my dear friend, MB

Lori said...

Like these photos- I would so buy the top two from you. I love when our Great Lake here, Lake Ontario turns, what I call, electric blue- right about dusk. I think you really captured that color in these photos. I would love to hang them in my bedroom.

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