Tips and Basic Guide on Quick Breads

It’s easy to understand why quick breads are so popular. First of all, there’s such a wide variety of taste-tempting breads from which to choose. And, they’re relatively speedy to prepare and bake, especially when you take into account the rising time necessary for yeast bread preparation.

Although biscuits, muffins, and nut breads play a particularly tasty role in rounding out the meal, the quick bread family isn’t limited to the bread plate. In fact, feathery pancakes and crisp waffles can serve as part of the main dish. And dough nuts, often star as the meal-ending dessert.

The following are quick bread tips and explanations:

• Baking powder, baking soda, steam, or air — rather than yeast — leaven quick breads.
• Most quick breads are best served hot from the oven- with plenty of butter!
• Most nut breads should be stored for at least a day. The flavors will mellow and the loaf will slice more easily.
• After baking, turn nut breads out of the pan and cool on a wire rack. Place cooled bread in an airtight container, or wrap it in foil or clear plastic wrap.
• A crack down the center of a nut loaf is no mistake — it’s typical.

Serve nut breads cut in very thin slices with simple spreads: soft butter, cream cheese, jam or jelly.

Dip tops of warm muffins in melted butter or margarine and then in sugar for a sweet and sparkling crusty topping.

Here is a recipe on a quick bread:

Zucchini Nut Loaf

1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp ground cinnamon
½ tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
½ tsp ground nutmeg
¼ tsp baking powder
1 cup sugar
1 cup finely shredded peeled zucchini
1 egg
¼ cup cooking oil
¼ tsp finely shredded lemon peel
12 cup chopped walnuts
Oven 350o

In a mixing bowl, stir together flour, cinnamon, baking soda, salt, nutmeg, and baking powder; set aside. In a mixing bowl beat together sugar, shredded zucchini, and egg. Add oil and lemon peel; mix well. Stir flour mixture into zucchini mixture. Gently fold in chopped nuts. Turn batter into a greased 8x4x2-inch loaf pan. Bake in 350o oven for 55 to 60 minutes or till wooden pick inserted near center comes out clean. Cool in pan 10 minutes. Remove from pan; cool thoroughly on a rack. Wrap and store loaf overnight before slicing. Makes 1.