Lemon poppyseed loaf

Quick Breads for Teatime & Beyond

Quick breads are just that: quick to make and quick to eat! The ingredients for these popular breads literally range from A to Z (apples, bananas, dates, zucchini, you name it), giving them a seasonal taste depending on what’s fresh at the market at any time of the year. Versatility is also a hallmark of a quick bread, delicious at breakfast, teatime, or as a midnight snack. You’ll find more recipes like these in Teatime in Ireland. To order signed copies, visit irishcook.com 

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STRAWBERRY & PECAN BREAD

MAKES 1 LOAF

          This “bread” is sweet enough to be considered “dessert.”

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon cinnamon

2 large eggs, beaten

3/4 cups canola oil

1 cup sugar

1 cup chopped strawberries

3/4 cup chopped pecans

Confectioners’ sugar, for dusting

1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Coat a 9-inch loaf pan with baking spray with flour. 

2. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, salt and cinnamon. In another medium bowl, whisk together eggs, oil and sugar. Stir into flour mixture until blended; fold in strawberries and pecans. Transfer mixture to prepared pan; smooth top,

3. Bake for 55 to 60 minutes, or until a skewer inserted into center comes out clean. Remove from oven; let cool on a wire rack for about 10 minutes. Invert bread onto rack. Return to upright; let cool completely. Dust with confectioners’ sugar before serving. 

CARROT & COURGETTE TEA BREAD

MAKES 1 LOAF

          Two delicious tea breads are made with carrots and zucchini — known in Ireland as courgettes — and they’re even better together! Unlike most recipes for either of these breads, this one uses butter rather than oil, creating a lovely texture that holds up nicely to being spread with butter or cream cheese. Perfect for breakfast, too! Because courgettes contain a lot or moisture, let them drain on a paper towel after measuring.

6 ounces unsalted butter, at room temperature

1 cup granulated sugar

2 large eggs

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

2 cups flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt 

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

1/2 cup golden raisins

1 ½ cup grated courgette

1 1/2 cup grated carrot

Softened butter, for serving (optional)

Softened cream cheese, for serving (optional)

1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Coat a 9-inch loaf pan with baking spray with flour.

2. In a large bowl, beat butter and sugar with an electric mixer on medium speed until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs, one at a time; beat in vanilla. 

3. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg. Add flour mixture to butter mixture; mix on low speed until combined. Stir in raisins, courgettes and carrots. Transfer mixture batter to prepared pan; smooth top. 

4. Bake for 55 to 60 minutes, or until a skewer inserted into center comes out clean. Remove from oven; let cool on a wire rack for about 10 minutes. Invert bread onto rack. Return to upright; let cool completely. 

LEMON POPPY SEED TEA LOAF

MAKES 1 LOAF

1 1/2 cups flour

1 1/4 cups sugar

3/4 teaspoon salt

3/4 teaspoon baking powder

1 tablespoon poppy seeds

1 large egg, beaten

2/3 cup canola oil

3/4 cup milk

1/4 teaspoon almond extract

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 cup confectioners’ sugar, sifted

Juice of 1 lemon

1 tablespoon melted butter

1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract.

1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Coat a 9-inch loaf pan with baking spray with flour.

2. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, salt, baking powder and poppy seeds. In a medium bowl, whisk together egg, oil, milk, almond and vanilla extracts; add to flour mixture. Beat with an electric mixer on medium speed for about 2 minutes, or until blended. Transfer mixture to prepared pan.

3. Bake for 55 to 60 minutes, or until a skewer inserted into center comes out clean. Remove from oven; let cool on a wire rack for about 10 minutes. Invert bread onto rack. Return to upright. 

4. Whisk together confectioners’ sugar, lemon juice, butter and vanilla. While cake is still warm, pour glaze over cake (place wax paper or paper towel under rack to catch drips from glaze). Let cake cool completely.

LEMON BREAD

MAKES 1 LOAF

5 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

1 cup sugar

3 tablespoons lemon extract

2 large eggs

1 1/2 cups flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup milk

2 tablespoons grated lemon zest

1/4 cup lemon juice

1/2 cup sugar

1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Coat a 9-inch loaf pan with baking spray with flour. 

2. In a large bowl, beat butter, sugar and lemon extract with an electric mixer on medium speed until smooth. Beat in eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.

3. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder and salt. Beat flour mixture into butter mixture, alternating with milk, until blended; stir in lemon zest. Transfer mixture to prepared loaf pan; smooth top.  

4. Bake for 55 to 60 minutes, or until a skewer inserted into center comes out clean. Remove from oven; let cool on a wire rack for about 10 minutes. Invert bread onto rack. Return to upright.

5. Whisk together lemon juice and sugar. While cake is still warm, pour glaze over cake (place wax paper or paper towel under rack to catch drips from glaze). Let cake cool completely.

Margaret Johnson’s “Recipes” page now includes “Ireland Hopping: Adventures in Food, Drink, and Travel.” For further details on her work, including how to order her signed cookbooks, visit www.irishcook.com.