Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Warning: The Aroma Emitted From The Oven Is Intoxicating (But Make It Anyway!)

My aunt has a pear tree in her backyard. She also grows tomatoes and peppers. She just gave us a brown paper bag full of pears. We ate a few, but decided to put the rest into this yummy bread.
I'm not sure exactly what kind of pears they were, but they were more like apples. They were crisp and ripe but never softened and weren't very sweet. From what I've been told, these are typical Texas pears. And they begged me to bake them into this wonderfully aromatic bread. I doubled the recipe and made my neighbors very happy.

Cornelia Walker Bailey's Pear Bread from Southern Cakes

  • 3 c. all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 tbsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1 c. chopped walnuts
  • 3/4 c. softened butter OR or 3/4 c. vegetable oil
  • 3 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 2 c. sugar
  • 2 c. peeled and finely grated ripe but firm pears
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract

Heat the oven to 350°F and lightly grease and flour a 10-inch tube pan or two 9-by-5-inch loaf pans.

Combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon in a large mixing bowl, and stir with a whisk to mix everything well. Stir the nuts into the dry mixture and set aside.

In a medium bowl, combine the butter or oil, eggs, sugar, grated pear, and vanilla, and stir to mix everything well. Scrape the pear mixture into the flour mixture and stir just until the flour disappears and the batter is evenly moistened.

Pour batter into the prepared pans and bake at 350°F for 60 to 70 minutes, or until the bread is golden brown and firm on top and a wooden skewer inserted in the center comes out clean.

Cool the bread in the pan on a wire rack or folded kitchen towel for about 10 minutes. Then turn it out onto a plate or a wire rack to cool completely, top side up.

NOTE: I doubled this recipe and made 4 loaves- 2 in glass pans, and 2 in metal pans. They baked for 55-60 minutes. The loaves in the glass pans peaked a little higher and made a rustic chasm down the center, as opposed to the loaves in the metal pans that baked a little more evenly. Both beautiful and totally delicious.

I just wanted to say, I first found this recipe from Bake or Break and saw it again on Leite's Culinaria, which confirmed that I needed to make this bread. And you do too! Go on now...


vanillasugarblog said...

Oh I can imagine the smells in your house while this beauty is baking. I think the whole smell-essence is one of the best parts of cooking.
I will never tire of cooking onions & peppers in a pan...ohhh that smell.
This bread looks awesome.

Peabody said...

I would love to try this with quince. Hopefully I can find some this year.

Monica H said...

Thanks Dawn, I kept walking around the house taking deep breaths saying "Oh, that smells so good! Honey, can you smell that?" I made rice pudding last night, and I kept doing the same- mmm :-)

Peabody- I hope yo make it and love it! It's so good.

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