Monday, April 29, 2013

Honey Spice Bread

From the kitchen of One Perfect Bite...I had some help in the kitchen Sunday morning. One of our neighbors was running a local marathon and wanted to keep her children occupied while she completed the 26 miles. The kids enjoy visiting with us and they are great cookie bakers, so the plan for their entertainment included some kitchen time and a batch of chocolate chips. It also ended up including several loaves of their mother's favorite honey bread,  meant as a warm bouquet to soothe her throbbing feet and pounding head.  This moist cake-like bread has much to commend it. It is not as sweet as the traditional cake that is eaten on the Jewish New Year and it is much easier to prepare. So easy in fact, that my eight and ten year old visitors were able to make it by themselves, and that will make it sweeter still to those for whom it was made. Honey cakes are not universally popular. They have a distinctive taste and texture that can be off-putting to many, but this one overcomes those problems and, if allowed to age a day before serving, is downright tasty. The use of honey in breads and cakes began centuries ago in Egypt, where flour and honey were mixed together and allowed to ferment for a month or so before baking. Over time additional ingredients were added and something resembling a recipe was developed. Cakes made using these early formulas were very sweet and the honey kept them fresh for a remarkable length of time. The first real honey cakes were made in Germany, but the honey bread of France, the classic pain d'epices, became the gold standard by which all others would be judged. This is not pain d'epices, but the recipe does make a nice honey cake that is fuss-free to prepare. If you let the finished loaves sit overnight, you'll find the cloying taste of honey dissipates and the flavor of the spices comes more into play. This is a nice cake that is easy to make and portable. It travels well, so it is a natural candidate for tea or a morning coffee. Here's how it is made.

Honey Spice Bread...from the kitchens of One Perfect Bite courtesy of Taste of Home magazine

2/3 cup packed brown sugar
1/3 cup 2% milk
2 cups all-purpose flour
1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
2 eggs
1/2 cup honey
1/3 cup canola oil
1/3 cup confectioners' sugar
2 teaspoons 2% milk

1) Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Generously spray an 8 x 4 x 2-inch loaf pan with nonstick spray.
2) In a small saucepan over low heat, cook and stir brown sugar and milk for 5 minutes or until sugar is dissolved. Remove from the heat. In a large bowl, combine dry ingredients.
3) In another bowl, combine eggs, honey, oil and brown sugar mixture. Stir into dry ingredients just until moistened. Pour into prepared pan.
4) Bake for 55 to 60 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean.
5) Cool in pan for 10 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to finish cooling. Combine confectioners' sugar and milk and mix until smooth. Drizzle over bread. Yield: 1 loaf (12 slices).

One Year Ago Today: Chinese Chicken with Cashews

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manu said...

This looks delicious... I love honey bread.

Velva said...

I can do this one too! I will be pinning this one. Thanks.


Inside a British Mum's Kitchen said...

What a lovely bread - although I would count this as a delicious sweet treat - perfect with a cup of tea! I LOVE the new look of your blog:)
Mary x

Pam said...

This would be delightful with a cup of tea!

Hovkonditorn said...

This looks delicious!

Foodycat said...

It sounds so simple! And beautiful flavours.

Mr. & Mrs. P said...

This honey bread looks amazing. BTW... Noticed you changed your picture on the blog... Looks really nice!!!

Linda A. Thompson-Ditch said...

I love honey cakes (thanks to one I made during our 50 Women Game Changers days) and this one looks lovely. I also like your blog's new look!

Kim G. said...

A simple bread to prepare with the kids, good recipe:) It looks good!

From the Kitchen said...

This sounds delicious! Quick breads are a favorite around here. Your new blog look is very nice. I enjoyed learning a little more about you. Lovely photo! You are very much like I've pictured you.


Ginny said...

This looks totally cool! I think I may finally have to spring for a loaf pan!!! I am headed now to look at your honey muffins and smooshed potatoes.

Melynda and Terry, we are the Browns! said...

We are interested in eating more honey and wanting a bee box for the back yard, finding this was a "meant to be", thanks.

Debby Foodiewife said...

First, did I blink? I see a new blog design and it's lovely.
A dear friend of mine, who is a beekeeper, sent me some honey. I've been waiting for the right recipe to come along, so I can do justice to his gift. I think I just found it. This looks absolutely beautiful. Thank you, Mary.
PS: I love your new photo. Very beautiful.

Melinda said...

Your header looks great!

The cake sounds good too. I'm sure that the neighbor was very happy to see what her kids made!

M :)

David said...

Mary, This is just the type of sweet bread that my wife likes soooo much... Thanks for the recipe! Take Care, Big Daddy Dave

flor do brownie said...

just wonderful! i loved it

Cindy said...

Mary--how kind you are. And the bread looks delicious.

Jeannie Tay said...

Lovely looking loaf of bread, I like the fact that you do not need to use the mixer to beat anything of the ingredients:D WOuld love to give this a try:)

Guru Uru said...

What a lovely looking bread my friend :D

Choc Chip Uru

Jenn said...

Heck, I would run a marathon just to get some of this bread!!! I bet it smelled incredible while baking!

Rambling Tart said...

I've been in bread-baking mode since Autumn arrived and would love to try this. :-)

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