Dried apricots and pecans give this quick bread its fabulous flavor and texture.
The recipe makes quite a large loaf, so make sure you use a standard 9-by-5-by-3-inch loaf pan. The outside becomes crumbly, so take care to slide a knife or spatula around the sides to loosen it before you take it out of the pan. Let the bread cool completely on a rack before you slice it.
Serve the bread with a flavored butter, lemon curd, or cream cheese spread. Take a look at the tips and variations for two quick and easy cream cheese spreads.
- 3/4 cup (6 ounces) boiling water
- 1 cup dried apricots, chopped
- 3 cups all-purpose flour, 13 1/2 ounces
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/3 cup butter or margarine, room temperature
- 1 cup sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 1/2 cup light corn syrup
- 1 cup chopped walnuts or pecans
- Heat the oven to 325 F (165 C/Gas 3).
- Generously grease and flour a 9-by-5-by-3-inch loaf pan or line it with parchment paper and grease the paper.
- Pour the 3/4 cup of boiling water over apricots; let stand 15 minutes.
- In a medium bowl combine the all-purpose flour, baking powder, and salt. Stir with a spoon or whisk to blend thoroughly. Set aside.
- In a mixing bowl with an electric mixer, beat the butter, sugar, eggs and corn syrup together until smooth and well blended. Stir in chopped apricots with water in which they were soaked and then add the chopped nuts.
- Gradually stir the dry ingredients into the wet mixture; stir until blended.
- Spoon the batter into prepared pan.
- Bake in the preheated oven for about 1 hour and 10 minutes to 1 hour and 20 minutes, or until wooden pick inserted in center of the loaf comes out clean.
- Cool the apricot bread in the pan for 10 minutes.
- Run a knife all around the edge of the pan and then carefully turn the bread out. If the pan was lined with parchment paper, lift it out with the ends of the paper and carefully peel the paper off. Cool the bread completely on a rack. Slice to serve.
- Serve with a flavored fruit butter spread, cream cheese, or preserves if desired.
- Makes one large loaf of apricot nut bread.
Tips and Variations
- Spiced Cream Cheese Spread - Combine 4 ounces of softened reduced-fat cream cheese (Neufchatel) with 1 tablespoon of sugar, 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon, 1/8 teaspoon of nutmeg, and a dash of ground ginger. Beat with an electric mixer until fluffy.
- Fruit Cream Cheese Spread - Beat 4 ounces of softened reduced-fat cream cheese until fluffy. Add 2 or more tablespoons of strawberry, raspberry, or blueberry jam and mix until smooth.