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Apricot-Almond Bread

April 10, 2000
Web posted at: 2:01 p.m. EDT (1801 GMT)

40 minutes to prepare; about 1 1/2 hours to bake
Yield: 1 large loaf

Moist and tart with apricots and crunchy with almonds, this bread is ideal for brunches and teas. It's also good as a mid-evening semi-dessert, when you want something -- sweet, but not too -- and you don't know exactly what. Try this bread at such times.

Ingredients:
  • Butter for the pan
  • 1 1/2 cups thinly sliced dried apricots
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 2 1/2 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons softened butter
  • 1/2 cup honey or real maple syrup
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 to 1 teaspoon orange rind
  • 1 cup finely chopped almonds

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Butter a large loaf pan.

Place the apricots and water in a medium-sized saucepan and bring to a boil. Lower the heat, cover, and simmer for 10 minutes. Transfer to a medium-sized bowl, and allow to cool for about 15 minutes.

Sift together dry ingredients (except almonds) in a separate bowl.

Stir the butter plus honey or syrup into the cooled apricot mixture. Beat in the egg and vanilla.

Add the dry ingredients, orange rind, and almonds. Mix minimally but well.

Spread into the prepared pan, and bake about 1 1/2 hours, or until a probe inserted all the way down comes out clean. Let cool for 10 minutes in the pan, then rap the pan firmly a few times on its sides and bottom. The bread should slip right out. Cool at least 15 minutes more before attempting to slice.



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