Bread Baking and other Fall Break Adventures

This week is the start of Fall Break for my boys. They get a whole week off school, which means I need a whole week’s worth of activities to keep us occupied. We finally got into our regular school routine and bam! it’s summer all over again.

Today we are headed to the Pumpkin Patch to spend a whole lot of damn money on produce that will sit on my front porch for the next 2 months until they rot or we start to hang the Christmas lights–which ever comes first. (Because we all know that there is NOTHING tackier than Christmas lights on a house and pumpkins still in the yard.)

{Cheese (i.e., little punkin’ head) circa fall, 2002}

Then on Tuesday we are off to Dinseyland for 2 days to say hello to The Mouse. In all of my years of visiting Disneyland (I’ve been going almost every summer since I could walk and yes, I’m fully aware of how spoiled I am) I have never actually spent the night at a Disneyland hotel. The boys have been asking and asking to go and stay, so when I saw a good deal at the hotel, I decided to jump on the opportunity.

This leaves another 4 days worth of time to fill. The temperature has finally dropped and even though the grass is still very green and there isn’t a single leaf on the ground, it’s finally starting to feel like fall. It makes me want to make things like homemade stew and fresh baked bread. It makes me want to stockpile things and prepare to hibernate for the long winter.

So one of the things that I am planning to do this week is make Holly’s Apple Friendship Bread. This bread just smells like fall. You’ll hate yourself because you’ll eat it until you make yourself sick. My friend Holly made this for me when I first met her. It’s called Friendship Bread because the recipe makes 2 loaves, one of which you are supposed to give to a friend. But believe me, this bread is so good, you might just want to keep them both for yourself.

Holly’s Apple Friendship Bread (Makes two loaves)

3 cups flour
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup canola oil
2 cups sugar
2 eggs, beaten
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups coarsely chopped and peeled apples

1. Prepare two, 8 inch or 9 inch loaf pans with cooking spray. Sprinkle a mixture of cinnamon and sugar in the bottoms and sides of the pans. (This might seem like a step that you could skip, but it adds an extra bit of yumminess that you do not want to skip!)

2. Combine flour, cinnamon, baking soda, baking powder, salt in a medium sized bowl and set aside. In a large bowl, mix together the oil, sugar, eggs, vanilla, and apples.

3. Pour the dry ingredients into the wet and mix well. The batter will be very stiff–stiff enough to make you think that you need to add more wet ingredients, but don’t! Keep stirring by hand.

4. Divide batter between the two pans. Sprinkle a little more cinnamon sugar mixture on the top. Bake for 45 minutes at 350 degrees. (Make sure the center isn’t too doughy before pulling it out of the oven.)


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