Sometimes something that seems so easy, just isn’t.
Take this Jam Quick Bread for example. The first time I made it I used some leftover homemade pineapple jam that I had from making pineapple tarts
And it was a killer quick bread: moist and light with delicious pockets of sweet pineapple. The only issue was a slight tendency for the edges to overcook before the center was done.
Seems a no brainer to make it with a different jam? Oh, if only that were true!
Five loaves, three different jams, two different oven temperatures and two loaf pan sizes later I have found my loaf. (And my family, while grateful for the food gifts, think it is time to move on to something else).
Here it is, a quick bread filled with pieces of dried apricot and swirls of apricot jam, delicately flavored with vanilla and almond, perfect for a snack, at breakfast, or dessert.
The bread is baked at 325 degrees for a slightly longer time so the center will be done before the edges burn. To protect the edges even more, line the pan with parchment paper.
Like so many baked goods, the recipe beings with creaming butter and sugar. I know I keep harping on about how you need to beat them together for a long time. So here is a visual demonstration.
The difference is pretty obvious.
Beat in the eggs, one at a time, beating for two minutes between each addition.
Add the jam and milk.
Stir in the dry ingredients. When they are just mixed in, add the dried apricots.
Spoon the batter into the pan and drop the remaining jam in large spoonful’s on top of the batter.
With a knife or spatula, swirl the jam into the batter.
Bake the bread. Once the cooking time is reached, test the bread for doneness. The best thing to do is use an instant-read thermometer. It should read 195-200 degrees in the center. If it is not done, tent the loaf with some aluminum foil to protect the edges and keep them from burning.
APRICOT JAM BREAD
- ¾ c butter softened
- 1 c plus 1 tbsp sugar
- ¾ tsp vanilla
- ¼ tsp almond extract
- 3 eggs room temperature
- 2/3 c apricot jam
- 6 tbsp milk lukewarm
- 2 c flour
- ¾ tsp salt
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 2/3 c dried apricots diced
- ¼ c apricot jam
- Preheat oven to 325. Grease and line a 9” loaf pan.
- Beat the sugar, butter, vanilla and almond extracts on high for 6-8 minutes, stopping to scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl twice during the beating. It should be almost white in color and doubled in volume.
- While the butter mixture is beating, prepare the other ingredients. Mix together the flour, salt and baking powder, and dice the apricots.
- Once the butter and sugar are well combined add the eggs, one at a time, beating well (2 minutes) after each addition.
- Stir in the jam and milk.
- Stir in the dry ingredients until they are almost fully mixed in. Add the dried apricots and fold them in until everything is well mixed.
- Put the batter in the prepared pan. Place dollops of jam (1/4 cup) on top of the batter then use a knife or spatula to swirl it into the batter.
- Bake for 60-75 minutes until the top is firm and a tester inserted into the center reads 195-200 degrees. Check the loaf about ten minutes before it is finished. If the sides are brown and the center is not yet done, tent a piece of foil over the top.
- Cool the finished loaf for fifteen minutes before turning it out onto a wire rack to cool.
This recipe works best in a 9” loaf pan. If you use a smaller 8” pan, be sure to check the sides for burning. It may take ten to fifteen minutes longer to cook than the larger size pan.
Eggs can be brought to room temperature quickly by placing them in a bowl of warm water.