Cornmeal Apple Bread

As a student, I was always very conscious of deadlines.  Because I work horribly under pressure (probably why I’m such a bad test taker), I always liked to get assignments and papers done early and then have time to go back over them a few times to make sure I had exactly what I wanted to hand in.

But it seems my deadline awareness only pertains to physical assignments.  Yep, it’s my academic dirty secret: I am really bad at studying.  I always think to myself, ‘It’ll be ok, you know the material, you’ll do fine…’ and honestly, I usually did ok.

Except now I’m facing a bigger test, the GRE.  The test that could (and probably will) ultimately decide where I go to grad school.  So obviously I need to do well.  And to do well, I need to study.  But getting myself to do it is sooo hard.

I’d much rather have staring contests with Izzy, who sleeps with her eyes open so I always lose, or bake up a loaf of cornmeal apple bread.

Don’t worry though, I made flashcards and am brushing up (or should I say dusting off) my math skills, and I’ve still got a month.  The next step is to start taking practice tests every chance I get.  I’ll get there; I’m getting there, but in the meantime, here’s some bread I made while I probably should have been studying.  The cornmeal in the batter gives it great texture and substance, and the sweetness of the apples makes it a great breakfast or snack option.

Apple Cornmeal Bread

Adapted from Baking: From My Home to Yours by Dorie Greenspan

Makes one 9X5” loaf

1 cup buttermilk

5 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted and cooled

2 large eggs

1 ¼ cups all-purpose flour

¾ cup yellow cornmeal

½ cup sugar

1 Tbsp baking powder

½ tsp baking soda

½ tsp cinnamon

¼ tsp nutmeg

¼ tsp salt

1 medium apple, peeled, cored, and cut into small pieces

½ cup dried apple, diced

 Center a rack in the oven and preheat to 375 degrees F.  Grease a 9X5” loaf pan and set aside.

Whisk together the buttermilk, melted butter and eggs in a medium bowl.  In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, cornmeal, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt, making sure they are evenly combined.

Fold the liquid ingredients into the dry, stirring until everything is just moistened.  Gently stir in the fresh and dried fruit, and scrape the batter into the prepared pan.

Bake for about 50 mins to 1 hour, or until a thin knife inserted into the center of the bread comes out clean.  Transfer the pan to a rack and cool for 10-15 mins before running a knife around the sides of the pan and unmolding.  Invert and cool right side up.  Serve warm with jam or butter.

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