Monday, May 26, 2008

Cherry Walnut Bread

I make this sweet dessert bread every Christmas holiday as it has traditionally been served at my in-law's Christmas Eve gathering for as long as I can remember. The recipe has been handed down to me from my Mother-in-Law... it was her mother's recipe. The above picture is the only one I have out of all the years I've been making the bread-- a teensy clip from this bigger pic of making truffles or fudge during my big baking weekend...

Oddly enough, the beloved bread has never made an appearance in any of the Xmas eve buffet pictures because it's gone before the pics are even taken-- that's how much my hubby's family loves it!! I personally don't eat it, but I make it for those who remember Grandma Doris' tradition and enjoy and savor it as a holiday treat.

So why am I putting this holiday recipe up now in the middle of the year? Well, with cherry season upon us... why not indulge in a little sugary goodness a little early? The recipe is super fast to throw together and you can make multiple batches to freeze or gift if you like.

Grandma Doris' Cherry Walnut Bread
Makes 2 loaves, 10 big or 20 half slices each loaf
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3 teaspoons (1 tablespoon) baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 4 large eggs, beaten
  • 1 16 oz. jar of maraschino cherries, pitted and de-stemmed WITH the juice
  • 1 1/2 cups walnut pieces
  • Preheat oven to 325 degrees
  • Butter bottom and sides of 2 standard loaf pans. I've used both glass and metal without problems.
  • Sift together the flour, baking powder, salt and sugar in a large bowl. Set aside.
  • Combine cherries, cherry juice, walnuts and beaten eggs together.
  • Fold wet ingredients into dry ingredients until it looks like a sweet, gooey, pink mess.
  • Pour half into each pan and bake side by side for 1 hour, turning at 30 minutes. You will know that the bread is done when a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. One year, it took me 1 hour and 20 minutes... it just seems to depend on the cherry juice I think. The low temperature does make it take a while, but the bread is sweet and moist as a result.

If you make this, please let me know what you think! Other recipes can be found by hitting the "Recipes" link to the right under "What am I talking about?". If you want other recipes, just email me or leave a comment with a recipe request. Happy baking!