Thursday, March 23, 2017

Lemon Poppy Seed Bread

About a week ago, I woke up with a hankering for some lemon poppy seed bread. So, I decided to make some. I looked around, couldn't find a recipe I liked, so I made my own. This goes really great with a citrusy black tea like Earl Grey.

Prep time: 25 min
Cook time: 1hr 20 min

Ingredients:

Bread

400 grams AP flour (aprx 14 oz or 3 cups) plus some for the
1.5 tsp baking powder
½ tsp baking soda
¼ tsp salt
1 cup butter or shortening
1 cup sugar
3 large eggs
¾ cup milk
2 tbsp lemon juice*
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tbsp lemon zest
3 tbsp poppy seeds

Syrup:

⅔ cup sugar
⅓ cup lemon juice*

Directions

Preheat oven to 350. Grease and flour a nine inch loaf pan.

Mix together the flour, baking powder, soda, and salt. Put the butter in the bowl of a stand mixer and pour in the sugar. Beat on medium for 2 to 3 minutes or until the butter has lightened in color. This is called the creaming method, and the holes that the sugar punch in the butter help it to rise once it starts baking.

Add the eggs, one at a time, making sure each is fully incorporated before adding the next one. Once the eggs are all in, pour in the milk then the lemon juice and vanilla and mix thoroughly.

Now slowly add the dry mix, in 3 batches, making sure each installment is mixed in before adding the next. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed between batches. Once the dry team is all in, turn your mixer to low and add the lemon zest and poppy seeds. Mix until the batter is smooth.

Pour into your loaf pan and bake for 1hr 15-20 min until a toothpick inserted in comes out clean or the bread reaches an internal temp of 190 degrees. Remove from the oven and let cool, in the pan, on a cooling rack for 10 minutes before removing from the pan and cooling on the rack for another 20 minutes.

While the bread is cooling, it's time to make the syrup. Pour the sugar and lemon juice into a small saucepan over medium low heat and stir until all the sugar is dissolved. Keep the syrup warm until the bread is finished cooling. Once the bread is cool, use a basting brush to brush the syrup on all sides, except the bottom.

When the bread has absorbed all the syrup it can, let it rest for a couple minutes and then serve. Drizzle the slices with any excess syrup. Enjoy!
*Before I made this bread, I would have sworn that fresh lemon juice vs bottled made no difference. I was wrong. My wife and I did a quick taste test, and I now have an almost-full bottle of lemon juice that I am not using. So, if you have the patience, I would highly recommend squeezing your own lemon juice for this. It only took me 4 small lemons to get all the juice I needed for this.

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