I love this quick bread - it tastes absolutely perfect for fall with honey, warm spices, walnuts, and dried fruits. It will make your kitchen smell so good! The bread is moist and tender - I think using cake flour really helps with this, although it would probably also be great with all-purpose flour if that's all you have. The one issue I had with the bread was that all the dried fruit sank to the bottom! Although it still tasted great, it wasn't quite as attractive - next time I'd toss the fruit with a bit of flour before adding it to the batter, which I think would help with this problem.
I'm also excited to announce that the winner of my Eat Your Books giveaway is Sara of noodle of the day.
In other giveaway news, I wanted to give a huge shout-out to Marla of Family Fresh Cooking - I won an Amazon gift certificate on her blog and my two shiny new cookbooks just arrived! I picked out Artisan Pizza and Flatbread in Five Minutes a Day and Tender: A Cook and His Vegetable Patch. They have both been giving me a ton of new recipe ideas, so you can expect to see them popping up here in the future! Thanks, Marla!
Honey-Walnut Bread with Dates and Raisins (adapted from The Shiksa Blog, original recipe here)
Makes 1 loaf cake
1/2 cup whole dates (about 4 large dates)
1/2 cup raisins
1 cup cake flour
1 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt
Generous pinch freshly grated nutmeg
3/4 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup honey
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup coarsely chopped walnuts
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a loaf pan with oil.
2. Place the dates and raisins in a bowl and pour the boiling water over. Set aside while preparing the cake.
3. Whisk together the cake flour, baking powder, cinnamon, salt, and nutmeg in a small bowl. Set aside.
4. Whisk together the oil, brown sugar, honey, eggs and vanilla in a medium bowl until completely combined.
5. Drain the dates and raisins. Pit and coarsely chop the dates.
6. Add the raisins, chopped dates, and walnuts to the flour mixture and toss. Pour the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients and gently fold together with a rubber spatula until just combined.
7. Pour the batter into the prepared pan, place on a larger baking sheet, and then pop in the oven. Bake for about 60 minutes, or until a tester comes out clean.