Friday, November 5, 2010

Autumn Date and Hazelnut Bread

From the kitchen of One Perfect Bite...The hazelnut harvest is underway here in Oregon. Every fall, stores and farm stands greet us with bins that are brimming with this meaty treasure. They are an important part of the local economy and I use them whenever I can. A local grower actually sells his hazelnuts chopped, roasted and ready for the freezer. It gets even better. If you have the foresight to ask, he also mill the nuts to a fine powder that's perfect for flourless baking. The downside to all this is there is no excuse for not baking cakes and breads that require hazelnuts. I love this particular quick bread. The recipe was developed by Susan Loomis for the French Farmhouse Cookbook and it is the only version of date nut bread that I still make today. It's wonderful for church gatherings or coffees where you have to provide something a little sweet. The bread is extremely easy to make , but if you want the best of flavors let it age for at least a day before slicing. I actually wait 2 days before cutting mine. The crust is what keeps me coming back to this recipe. It is soft and buttery and the loaf has a remarkable aroma that I find irresistable. If you haven't made this bread I hope you'll give it a try. There will be no regrets. Here's the recipe.

Autumn Date and Hazelnut Bread...from the kitchen of One Perfect Bite, courtesy of Susan Loomis

1-3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
11-1/2 (eleven and one-half) tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/3 cup granulated sugar
3 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla or hazelnut extract
1/2 cup hazelnuts, toasted, skinned and coarsely chopped
1 cup dates, pitted and coarsely chopped

1) Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Butter and flour a 9 x 5 x 3-inch loaf pan. Set aside.
2) Sift flour, baking powder and salt together on a piece of waxed paper.
3) In bowl of an electric mixer, blend butter and sugar until mixture is light and pale yellow. Add eggs, one at a time, beating after each addition. Beat in vanilla or hazelnut extract. Turn mixer to low speed and add the flour, mixing just until combined. Add hazelnuts and dates and mix to distribute through batter.
4) Scrape batter into prepared pan, rapping it sharply on a hard surface to release any air bubbles in batter. Bake in center of oven until the loaf has puffed and a knife inserted into center of cake comes out clean, about 50 minutes.
5) Remove pan from oven and immediately remove it from pan. Cool on a wire rack. Yield: 1 loaf - 8 servings.

You might also enjoy these recipes:
Mango Nut Bread - Chef in You
Fruit and Nut Loaf - Anja's Food 4 Thought
Chocolate and Hazelnut Bread - Chef in You
Cherry and Almond Scones - The English Kitchen
Medjool Date and Walnut Bread - Closet Cooking
Date Nut Spice Bread - Brown Eyed Baker
Three Savory Quick Breads - One Perfect Bite


Ginny Hartzler said...

Hi Mary, I am just returning from two days sick leave. But I have read your posts that I missed. WOW!! Hunting tigers on an elephant! You are going to have amazing stories for us, I am so glad you are having these once in a lifetime experiences! I like this hearty bread becasue it will keep for a long time!

kitchen flavours said...

This bread looks yummy! Bookmarking this,.thanks for sharing!

Marguerite said...

Love hazelnuts and this bread looks divine! Thanks for sharing!

Banana Wonder said...

This is truly amazing! I love anything hazelnuts. Thanks for the glorious recipe!!

daphne said...

I can smell them from here! I love anything about bread. Whatever the combination and the ingredients, I JUST LIKE IT=0

Lucie said...

I can taste the bread just reading your post. I love using ground nuts in cakes and loaves--it adds a great moistness and depth.

Holly said...

This bread sounds amazing! I love dates-haven't had them for ever tho:)

Flavia Galasso said...

Just few days ago a friend from Piemonte gave to me some wonderful and famous "gentle blonde Piemonte Hazelnut" I Know what to prepare....thanks for this recipe....when I'm going to prepare this yummie bread ..may I post it on my blog? Of course telling that it's from this beautiful blog and from you.... waiting for your answer...have a nice weekend!!!Hugs

Flavia Galasso said...

Just few days ago a friend from Piemonte gave to me some wonderful and famous "gentle blonde Piemonte Hazelnut" I Know what to prepare....thanks for this recipe....when I'm going to prepare this yummie bread ..may I post it on my blog? Of course telling that it's from this beautiful blog and from you.... waiting for your answer...have a nice weekend!!!Hugs

Cherine said...

I love this bread, full of flavors!

Alessandra said...

Wow, I cannot believe that you managed to prepare all these posts before traveling! You are amazing Mary!


Diane said...

We love hazel nuts and have masses fron the garden so this is a must. Diane

penny aka jeroxie said...

Oh Gosh! YOu have working hard in the kitchen with all posts!

Priya Suresh said...

Scrumptious and beautiful looking bread..

♥Sugar♥Plum♥Fairy♥ said...

Oh what a delicious bread!!
A super bread from the kitchen of one perfect bite, perfection in every bite here!

I wish we had a local grower who sold chopped hazelnuts too!
dat too roasted!
Wowowoaaa i wanna live near a grower like who will even go to the extent of milling it or u!!
me love love..

Rachana said...

Hey Mary,

That bread looks amazing!!!! I love hazelnuts.

Sam Hoffer / My Carolina Kitchen said...

Gorgeous bread Mary. I really enjoy Susan Loomis's recipes.

I've never used hazelnuts and this bread is my inspiration to get on the bandwagon.

Linda Starr said...

Ummm I love hazelnuts.

Red Nomad OZ said...

I'm a big fan of date-and-nut-anything, so looking forward to giving it a go! BUT I bet this is a bit different to the food on your trip??

Happy travels!!

CaSaundraLeigh said...

I am not sure if I've ever had a hazlenut to be honest--but the bread sure looks good!

Unknown said...

I would love a piece of this with my morning coffee or an afternoon tea!

Very nice recipe, thank you for sharing!

T.W. Barritt at Culinary Types said...

I was sorry that on my last trip to Portland I wasn't able to sample the local hazelnuts. I will make up for it next time! The only thing that keeps me from baking with hazelnuts is the chore of removing the skins. I'm not very good at that for some reason ...

Southerncook said...

I love hazelnuts and this bread sounds amazing. Thank you for sharing this recipe. I will make it over the weekend.

Carolyn/A Southerners Notebook

JG said...

What a nice combination - hazelnuts and dates. It must be difficult not to enjoy a piece before even 12 hours elapse. :)

I'm enjoying reading about your trip. Thank you for the updates!


From the Kitchen said...

Ah, delicious! My post today is a Susan Loomis recipe that I've made a number of times. It's from her memoir
"On Rue Tatin".

Hope your travels are still going well.


Foley said...

That looks yummy - and I actually have some hazelnuts in the freezer!!

Susi's Kochen und Backen said...

Mary, anything with hazelnuts is great in my book! This is a lovely looking bread! :o)

Joanne said...

I wish we harvested hazelnuts here in NYC because I would love to get them at a lower price and bake up a storm with them! This bread just screams fall. Love it.

Chele said...

Great photo! Looks wonderful ;0)

The Blonde Duck said...

I've never had date bread!

Eliana said...

This bread has delicious written all over it!

Monet said...

Mary, I love how you utilize a food item that grows abundantly in your region. We all need to make more "local" choices like this! I adore hazelnuts, and I wish we could get our hands on them easier. This bread looks divine!

Rita said...

What a great loaf recipe; I love to try someting new; happy travels.

Unknown said...

This bread looks wonderful with absolutely delicious flavours!

My Little Space said...

I love what goes in to this bread. sounds as wonderful as you said so. Thanks alot. Bookmarked this for later use.

FOODESSA said...

When I saw the Date and Hazelnut bread and realized I had missed this post...I had to have this recipe. Thanks ;o)


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