Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Applesauce Pecan Loaf

I don't know why I had a half a jar of applesauce in the far reaches of my fridge, but it was there, daily challenging me to remember what I'd done with the other half. This morning I decided to end the taunting and mix it into a cinnamon nut loaf. A cloudy, August day with morning temps in the sixties, it seemed far more like fall, so baking seemed appropriate. As it turned out, it was quite good. I topped it with streusel because, hey, who doesn't like streusel?  And dusted it with powdered sugar, because that always makes it look as though it has come from a bakery. It was the perfect accompaniment to my morning coffee as I sat watching the darling little goldfinches destroy my zinnias. Note to self: Buy birdseed.

Applesauce Pecan Loaf

1 cup dark brown sugar
1 cup applesauce
1/3 cup canola oil
2 extra-large eggs
2 Tablespoons milk
½ teaspoon vanilla
2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon cinnamon
½ teaspoon cardamom
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon nutmeg
1 cup chopped pecans, toasted

Preheat oven to 350°F.  Grease a loaf pan; set aside.

In a medium mixing bowl combine sugar, applesauce, oil, eggs, milk, and vanilla.  Set aside.  In a large mixing bowl whisk together dry ingredients until blended.  Make a well in the center, and pour wet ingredients into dry ingredients.  Stir to combine.  Fold in pecans.  Pour into the greased loaf pan and top with streusel mixture (recipe below).  Bake for approximately 1 hour, or until toothpick inserted into the center of the loaf comes out clean.  Remove to a wire rack to cool.  Dust with powdered sugar.

Streusel Topping

½ cup all-purpose flour
¼ cup brown sugar, packed
½ stick unsalted butter
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon

Combine all the ingredients in a food processor and pulse until crumbly.

This is not an overly sweet loaf.  I find that it is excellent when served warm, topped with butter and a light dusting of cinnamon and sugar.

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Unknown said...

The addition of cardamon sounds inspired

Linda said...

It is nowhere near fall-like temps here in the Houston area, but your bread looks a thousand times better than the Honey Nut Cheerios I've been eating for breakfast, and I just happen to have applesauce. I love that you used cardamom and nutmeg, two of my fave spices. With the addition of streusel and powdered sugar I will be in danger of eating the whole loaf for breakfast. said...

This looks so good, I am pinning it to make this fall! mmmmmm, I can almost smell it from your photo!