Tuesday, February 23, 2010
lemon and things
Winter feels like it is dragging on. Cold weather followed by snow... followed by some more snow. Sigh. Normally I would be embracing winter and would be skiing... but really, I just want to take my bike out and go for a good solid bike ride. Looking outside my window today my hopes are dashing... yes, it is snowing (again).
I decided to combat these winter blues by baking a loaf; and although banana loaves have been a comfort during the deep cold, I decided that I needed to spruce things up a bit. I needed new flavours that would fill my kitchen with fresh smells and remind me that spring really is just around the corner. And so I grabbed ingredients that brought the following to mind: exotic, hot weather and vacation :0)
The following quick bread filled the bill! My fingertips smelled like lemons after squeezing and zesting a couple of them. That bright, fresh, tart smell was exactly what I needed to bring a smile to my face and alleviate those winter blues. Add a whole lot of coconut and I felt as though I was in Thailand - sitting on the beach and eating fresh fruit while basking in the sun. Who would have thought baking a quick bread could do that?!
Lemon Coconut Quick Bread
2 1/2 c. flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/4 c. white sugar
1 3/4 c. finely shredded unsweetened coconut (don't use sweetened, it'll overpower the loaf)
3/4 c. milk
1/2 c. fresh lemon juice (2 lemons)
zest of 1 lemon
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 c. butter, melted
Heat your oven to 350 F. Grease your 9x5 loaf pan. Set aside.
In the bowl of your stand mixer (using your paddle attachment), mix together the flour, baking powder and salt. Stir in the sugar and the coconut.
Meanwhile, in a small bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, lemon juice, lemon zest and vanilla.
Make a well in the centre of your dry ingredients, then pour in the egg mixture. Stir on your lowest speed until all the ingredients are just combined.
Add the melted butter and stir everything until smooth. This shouldn't take more than 15-20 seconds.
Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan and bake for 60 - 70 minutes. At 50 minutes cover the loaf with some tin foil so that it doesn't dry out.
Let the bread cool on a wire rack for 10 - 15 minutes - then remove it from the pan and allow it to cool - or slice into it. Lasts for almost a week in an airtight container... so you can keep those winter blues at bay for quite some time! ;0)