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I cannot begin to tell you how many times I have baked this delicious tea bread!  It was a popular request when I worked at the Manor for the tea parties and Ladie’s Luncheons, and was often requested as something to send when there was something needing sending such as in a new baby, or death in a family etc.  It’s a North American thing.  We send food to show our support at times of need.

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This delicious recipe makes two very generous loaves, which are not only moist and sturdy but filled with glorious poppyseeds and tons of flavour!

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Flavoured with orange, lemon, vanilla and almond extracts . . .  there is a lot of flavour going on, but it doesn’t clash in the least and somehow they flatter each other.  The almond does stand out a bit more than the rest, but not in an obnoxious way!    It’s just plain lovely.

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There is a bit of crunch and colour from the poppy seeds of course . . .  and then there is that lovely almond and orange flavoured glaze which adds a bit of a sweet crusty crunch to the top!  Seriously gloriously scrumptious this is.

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If you bake only one thing this weekend, let it be this.  You will be glad you did.  One to eat.  One to freeze for later, or give away as a gift!  You decide.

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*Almond Glazed Poppy Seed Bread*
Makes 2 large loaves

One to keep and one to gift or freeze

This is dense and moist and delicious with fabulous flavours and a sweet almond glaze topping. 

420g of plain flour (3 cups)

1 tsp salt

1 1/2 tsp baking powder

3 large free range eggs

335ml of milk (1 1/2 cups)

125g of butter at room temperature (1/2 cup)

115ml of sunflower oil (1/2 cup)

430g of sugar (2 1/4 cup)

1 1/2 TBS poppy seeds

1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

1 1/2 tsp almond extract

1 tsp lemon extract

1 tsp orange extract

Almond Glaze:

1/2 tsp almond extract

1/2 tsp vanilla extract

60ml of orange juice (1/4 cup)

145g of sugar (3/4 cup)

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Preheat the oven to 180*C/350*F/ gas mark 4.  Butter and flour two large loaf tins.  Set aside.

Sift the flour, salt and baking powder together in a large bowl. Mix together the remaining ingredients and add, then beat together with an electric mixer for about 2 minutes until well combined.   Divide between the two prepared loaf tins.

Bake for one hour, or until a toothpick inserted in the centre comes out clean and the top springs back when lightly touched.   Allow to cool in the pan for 10 minutes before removing to a wire rack.  Stir together the glaze ingredients until the sugar is somewhat dissolved.  Spoon over the loaves while they are still warm.   Allow to cool compltely, then wrap in foil or store in an airtight container.  These also freeze well.

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