Saturday should have been the day I baked...but was too busy trying to keep Farmhouse from flooding. The water was right up to the door here at the house. The garden looked like a lake. I spent most of the day sweeping the water away from the door. But by Sunday morning it was just showering...and I felt like making Bessie's Christmas Bread. My mom used to make this every Christmas. She used the candied fruit...cherries and pineapple..the red and green kind. And it does make a beautiful bread when sliced. Looks just like stained glass.But John and I prefer it with dried fruit. So I just substitute dried fruit for the candied. I used apricots,cranberries,and apple. I just cut it up and added it in. I also added about a teaspoon of grated orange zest just because we like it and it makes it taste like....Christmas.
This is the original recipe. It is a VERY dense and heavy bread. There is only 1 cup of flour for 2 loaves so this bread is mostly fruit and nuts. Very good toasted in the morning with coffee or tea.
Bessie's Christmas Fruit Bread
1/2 lb pitted dates 1 lb brazil nuts, whole 4 oz. red candied cherries 4 oz. green candied cherries 4 oz. red candied pineapple 4 oz. green candied pineapple
1 cup flour 1 cup sugar 1 teaspoon baking powder 1/4 teaspoon salt
4 eggs, well beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla
Half the dates and cut all fruit,either candied or dried into pieces. Combine with the whole nuts.
Add dry ingredients to the fruit and nuts.Combine to coat mixture. Stir in beaten eggs and vanilla. Stir well.Batter is very dense.
Line loaf pans with parchment paper that is buttered. Pour batter into pans.
Bake 1 hour at 325 degrees. Reduce to 300 degrees and bake another 20 minutes. Cover with foil if the bread is getting to brown. Check bread with a tester till it comes out clean. Let loaves rest on a rack 5 minutes. Remove from pans and tear away paper. Let cool.
the night will never stay, the night will still go by, though with a million stars you pin it to the sky; though you bind it with the blowing wind, and buckle it with the moon, the night will slip away like sorrow or a tune.