Sunday, November 18, 2012

Lemon Poppy Seed Bread

(Yes, I realize the bread is slightly undercooked in the middle. Please ignore!).
I try to be a good hostess, I really do. Unfortunately, due to the demands of a busy toddler and a husband who is frequently gone on the weekends, I don't always have the time to whip up a beautiful, fancy brunch buffet when we have guests visiting. More often than not, I'm trying to keep Tony from throwing food off his high chair (and my overweight beagle from snatching it up), frantically grabbing a broom and dustpan to sweep up the remnants of my child's breakfast from the floor and offering up a half-hearted, "uhhh, there's coffee on the stovetop, and I'd be more than happy to...ummm, pour a bowl of cereal for you!" Not surprisingly, our guests politely decline, smile graciously and mention something along the lines of "oh we would LOVE to take you up on your offer of cereal and 3-hour old coffee but we made plans to meet so-and-so for breakfast! Umm, 10 minutes ago! Really!" I know that none of our friends/family expect me to morph into Bree Van de Kamp (Desperate Housewives reference here) and present them with a spread of baked goods, omelets to order and mimosas with freshly squeezed orange juice, but I would like for our overnight guests to not feel like they have to rush out the door when they wake up every morning and make a  Starbucks run just to get some caffeine and decent breakfast.

Our friends from Baton Rouge came up for a long weekend about two months ago, and I decided to be pro-active and make something tasty that could be prepared a day or two in advance. I absolutely adore anything lemon poppyseed, and I was really excited when I found this recipe. It was easy to throw together, it went great with our morning coffee, and it was well-received and appreciated by our friends.
Source: All Recipes

Ingredients

3 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 T poppyseeds
2 1/2 cups white sugar
1 1/8 cups vegetable oil
3 eggs
1 1/2 cups milk
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/2 tsp lemon extract

For the glaze
1/4 cup orange juice
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 tsp lemon extract

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease three 8x4 inch bread pans. (I just used one regular sized loaf pan. Worked just fine).


2. In a large mixing bowl, stir together the flour, salt, baking powder, poppy seeds and 2 1/2 cups white sugar.
3. Add the eggs, milk, oil, vanilla and lemon extract; mix until smooth, about 1 minute.
4. Pour batter evenly into the prepared pans.


5. Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 50 to 55 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the loaves comes out clean. Cool loaves in the pans for 10 minutes before removing to a wire rack.


6. Combine orange juice with remaining 3/4 cup sugar and desired flavor of extract; stir well.
7. Pour this mixture over the loaf while it is still hot. Allow loaf to cool completely before serving.

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