My friend Clara over at Clara’s Corner, in her comment on my last post, asked for the recipe to my Pear Bread. Well, the truth is, I’ve made that bread so often, I don’t use a written recipe, but I did write it down earlier for my children (in case I kicked the bucket or something) so here it is, for what it’s worth. I cook mostly by trial and error (which means my family often endures the trial of eating my errors), so I don’t use a lot of written recipes, although my family probably wishes I would.
Anyway, this used to be apple bread, because the place we lived before had an ancient, abandoned orchard nearby which produced some of the most ugly, gnarly, wormy old apples you ever saw—but they made good bread. But now we have pears instead—hence the apple bread becomes pear bread. But, at its core, it’s the same recipe, so I hope you find it appeelling. (See how y’all inspired me with your wonderful puns in the comments?)
Okay, so I really should confess, too, that this is really as much cake as it is bread. In fact, I was looking the other day at my friend Judy’s wonderful recipe blog, Recipes From a Southern Country Cook and I noticed that an apple cake recipe she had on there was remarkably similar to my apple/pear bread recipe. But, you know, if I call it bread, we can eat it without guilt because apple/pear bread just sounds so wholesome and nutritious and…non-fattening. And if we called it cake, we’d feel awful for eating a whole loaf in one sitting. Not that we’ve done that, of course. Well…not a WHOLE lot.
Well, not every day or anything….
Ahem…anyway, without further ado (or any more puns), here’s my recipe for pear bread. We like a spicy bread, so you may want to adjust the spice for your taste. Also, we like a very fruity, moist bread, so if you don’t, you may wish to add less fruit. Adding more fruit, however, makes it easier to rationalize that second piece! After all, fruit is GOOD for you!
4-5 cups of apples or pears, peeled and diced
1 cup white sugar
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup chopped pecans (raisins are also good)
1 cup vegetable oil
1 teaspoon vanilla
3 cups flour (sometimes I also add a handful of oatmeal)
2-3 teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon nutmeg
1 half teaspoon cloves
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking soda
Mix together pears, white sugar, brown sugar, and pecans. Then, separately mix together the vegetable oil, eggs, and vanilla (I use a little electric hand mixer). Sift together flour, salt, baking soda, and spices.
Then, alternate adding the pear, sugar, and pecan mixture and the sifted flour/spice/salt/soda to the oil/eggs/vanilla mixture. Or, really, you could just mix all of it together at one time, and I’m sure it would turn out fine. Mix well and put in two loaf pans. When I use a lot of fruit, sometimes I have enough for three loaf pans or at least, enough left over to fill a couple of those little tiny loaf pans you can get at Walmart. Bake at 350 degrees for 40-60 minutes (the tiny loaf pans obviously take less time) until top springs back when pressed. Let cool, then turn out of the pan. And, by now, the house smells so good that you just can’t help yourself. Go ahead. Have a slice or two.
After all, life is short. Enjoy it!