Thursday, September 20, 2012

Pear Bread

My sister has about 5 or 6 pear trees at her house.  The pears were really bursting off the trees this year.  It was crazy.  My mother and I picked about 6 batches of pears.  I made 6 pans of roasted pears with vanilla and  honey for my sister.  The last time, I kept some of the pears that I cooked.  Sadly, we did not eat the pears.  I decided that instead of throwing out the pears that I had lovingly cooked, I would make this delicious Pear Bread.  

Pear Bread
By Smitten Kitchen

3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
¼ teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1 cup chopped walnuts (optional)
¾ cup butter, softened, or ¾ cup vegetable oil
3 eggs, lightly beaten
2 cups sugar
2 to 4 firm, ripe pears (2 cups) grated
2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1.     Heat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
2.     Lightly grease and flour a 10-inch tube pan or two 9-by-5 inch loaf pans.
3.     Combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon in a large mixing bowl, and stir with a fork to mix everything well.  If you’re using nuts, scoop out about ¼ cup of the flour mixture and combine it in a small bowl with the chopped walnuts, stirring and tossing to coat the nuts with the flour.
4.     Peel and core pears, then grate them.  You’ll want two grated cups total; set them briefly aside.  In a medium bowl, combine the butter or oil, eggs, sugar, grated pear, nuts (if using), and vanilla, and stir to mix everything well.  Scrape the pear mixture into the flour mixture and stir just until the flour disappears, and the batter is evenly moistened.
5.     Quickly scrape the batter into the prepared pans and bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 60 to 70 minutes or until the bread is golden brown and firm on top and a wooden skewer inserted in the center comes out clean.
6.     Cool the bread in the pan on a wire rack or folded kitchen towel for about 10 minutes.  Then turn it out onto a plate or a wire rack to cool completely, top side up.  Serve it as is, sprinkle it with confectioners’ sugar or drizzle it with a simple glace made from whisking 3 tablespoons buttermilk, a dash of vanilla and 2 cups of confectioners’ sugar together.