This bread is pure goodness. It is low fat yet satisfying. With just a hint of banana, the natural sweetness of pears and cinnamon shines through. I made an almond streusel that runs through the center of the bread. For extra crunch I also topped the bread with it. Remember to never use a hand mixer for quick breads (and muffins) because doing so will make it gummy. Mix the batter with a wooden spoon just until the wet and dry ingredients are combined.
Pear Almond Streusel Bread
Ingredients: Almond Streusel
-1/4 cup all-purpose unbleached flour
-3 tbsp brown sugar
-1/4 tsp cinnamon
-1 tbsp canola oil
-1/2 cup sliced almonds
To prepare the streusel:
In a small bowl mix together the dry ingredients. Drizzle the canola oil and mix with finger until a sandy, coarse mixture forms. Add the almonds and mix to combine.
Ingredients: Pear Bread
-1 overripe banana
-1/2 cup pear puree
-1/4 cup sugar
-2 tbsp molasses
-1/4 cup canola oil
-2 cups all-purpose unbleached flour (increase the fiber by using whole wheat pastry flour)
-3/4 tsp baking soda
-1 tsp cinnamon
-1/4 tsp nutmeg
-1/2 tsp salt
To prepare the batter:
Preheat oven to 350. Lightly grease a 9 x 5 loaf pan.
In a large mixing bowl, mash the banana with a fork until it is smooth. Add pear puree, sugar, molasses, and canola oil. Tip: coat measuring spoon with canola oil before measuring the molasses. This will allow the molasses to slide out easily and not stick to the spoon.
In another bowl, sift together flour, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt. Use a wooden spoon to mix with wet ingredients until just combined. Be careful not to over-mix the batter.
Transfer half of the batter to the loaf pan. Layer about two thirds of the streusel on top of the batter in the loaf pan. Add the second half of the batter to the loaf pan. Sprinkle with the remaining streusel.
Bake for about 45-50 minutes. Remove from the oven and invert onto a cooling rack. Flip the bread right side up and let cool completely.
I hope everyone had a great first week of 2011. No complaints on my part. We’re all healthy and blessed. I’m just feeling a bit stressed with internship applications and studying for the GRE…I am making an effort to practice yoga 2 times a week so that it can ease my anxiety. I went to a warm yoga class at Lifetime yesterday and it felt great. My hips and hamstrings are so tight from running. It felt amazing to stretch them out. It was also nice to clear my mind for those 75 minutes. Those who think yoga is not exercise should try a class. My body is sore today!