Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Beltane Lemon Bread

Recipe From "Cooking by Moonlight" by Karri Ann Allrich


My quest to use my bounty of fresh Meyer lemons brought me to explore a most delightful cookbook for cooking with the seasons. In “Cooking by Moonlight,” Karri Ann Allrich has created menus and recipes for each moon (month) of the year.  May’s Flower Moon menu features this quick bread.

Karri Ann recommends this for Beltane (May Day) celebrations, so I thought I’d better practice it beforehand. I doubled the recipe and shared one loaf with my musician colleagues at a gig (at a local Farmer’s Market,) and the other at a writer friend’s reading and soiree. The bread was popular at both, eliciting comments that it had a complex flavor yet was light, not too sweet or oily.

Because my lemons were small to medium, I used 3 for the juice and the rind. I also used salted butter, and decreased the salt by half. The batter seemed thick, so I added two splashes of soy milk (cow’s milk would work equally well). Next time I will try using whole wheat pastry flour in place of the unbleached white. They are often interchangeable, and I think other ingredients will stand up to the wheat flour. I might also increase the amount of lemon zest and juice, or use bigger lemons!

Glaze Ingredients Ready to Mix
Preparing the Glaze
Lemon Bread
1 loaf

6 tbsp. unsalted butter, softened
1 c. light brown sugar, firmly packed
2 large free-range eggs, beaten
¼ c. sour cream or organic yogurt
1 tbsp. grated lemon zest
2 c. unbleached all purpose flour
1 ½ tsp. baking powder
1 t. fine sea salt


¼ c. superfine granulated sugar
Juice of 1 large lemon

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease an 8 ½ inch loaf pan.

Cream together butter and brown sugar in mixing bowl. Beat in eggs and mix well. Add the sour cream and lemon zest, and beat until smooth.

In a separate bowl, combine flour, baking powder, and salt. Add the dry ingredients to the wet and mix well. Spoon batter into the greased loaf pan.

Bake for about 50  minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean.

While bread is baking, make the glaze by whisking together the granulated sugar and lemon juice in a measuring cup to dissolve sugar as much as possible.

Remove the bread from the oven and make tiny holes in the top with the toothpick.  Give the lemon glaze a stir then slowly pour on the bread while it is still hot, allowing it to seep into the bread (see video).  Set the loaf on a rack to cool for about 15 minutes. Turn it out of the pan and cool completely.

1 comment:

  1. Yum!
    This was delicious. I highly recommend it to anyone who wants to try making it. I want more of it.