Apple Bread, incarnation #1

This fall, with access to so many different varieties of apples (through the farm job) as well as a cafe-bakery kitchen (through the baking job), I want to build some recipes that banter with whatever variety I use. I want to discover just what flavors are best suited to one another, spices heightening fruit- and then finding the perfect vehicle for it all. Some types, I know, are better sliced into pies than sauces, or dried into granola than eaten raw.

Here’s today’s first experiment. It’s an apple-almond bread, made with Golden Supremes- but only because I didn’t have any more interestingly flavored fruit in my fridge. I’d like to recreate it with some Ruby Jons later this week…

Apple-Almond Bread

1c almonds, roasted

1/4c coconut oil

1/2c maple syrup

1 tsp vanilla

2 1/2 tbsp ground flax mixed with 3 tbsp water

3/4c almond or hemp milk mixed with 1 tsp cider vinegar

2 medium-large apples (plus an extra, for topping)

3c flour

2 tsp baking powder

1 tsp baking soda

1 tsp salt

2 tsp cinnamon

1/2 tsp cloves

1/4 tsp cardamom

**preheat your oven to 325*. grind almonds in a food processor to a fine grain- add coconut oil and process again until relatively smooth. pour this into a large mixing bowl. add flax mixture, maple syrup, vanilla, and almond milk-vinegar brew. whisk until combined.

**core the apples, and cut into a few chunks- place these in your food processor and process to small bits. alternatively, use a grater and hand-grate the apples. add this to the rest of the liquid ingredients.

**in a separate bowl, combine flour, baking powder & soda, salt, and spices. add to the liquid ingredients, stirring until all the flour has been incorporated.

**pour the batter into a large, oiled loaf pan- 10″ should do the trick. slice the extra apple into several thin disks and arrange them however you please on top of the batter.

**bake for 60-65 minutes, testing with a toothpick or a smooth-bladed knife for a clean removal. when done, let cool in the pan for 10 or so minutes- then remove and cool completely on a wire rack before slicing.

**this bread is fairly delicate- be careful when slicing. the crust wants to break away from the body of the bread, but with some gentle cajoling, you’ll end up with a beautiful cut.

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