Monday, March 19, 2012

Lemon Cream Cheese Bread

A friend sent me a recipe for Orange Cream Cheese Bread last fall. I tried it, but the baking time and temperatures were off. It turned out kind of crispy, not exactly the kind of loaf I like. I filed the recipe away and thought I'd try it again later.

Well, later came when I came across the recipe last week. I didn't have any oranges on hand and really didn't want to make a trip to the store for some. But I did have lemons. Lovely, lovely lemons. And so I substituted lemons for oranges. Wow! I'm so glad I did. This recipe makes two loaves, so I was ready to freeze one for later. My family didn't cooperate and both loaves where gone in a flash! It's just that good!

Here's what you need:

1 8 oz. pkg cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 eggs
1/4 cup lemon juice
2 1/4 cups flour
1 teas salt
1 TBSP baking powder
3/4 cup milk
zest of 2 lemons
1/2 cup chopped nuts
For the glaze:
1 cup powdered sugar
enough lemon juice to make the glaze easy to drizzle

In a mixing bowl, cream the butter and cream cheese until smooth. Beat in the sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Stir in the lemon juice.

In another bowl, combine the flour, salt, and baking powder. Add to the creamed mixture. Stir in the milk and lemon zest. Add the nuts and mix well.

Pour the batter into two greased and floured loaf pans. Bake at 325 degrees for 55-60 minutes. If the top browns too quickly, cover loosely with foil. Check for doneness by inserting a toothpick or butter knife into the center. If it comes out clean, the bread is done.

Allow to cool in the pans for 10 minutes. Carefully remove from the pans and place on wire racks to finish cooling. I always cover my wire racks with wax paper because I like to add a glaze and don't want it dripping through the racks.

After 30 minutes, make the glaze by adding enough lemon juice to the powdered sugar to allow it to drizzle easily. Spread over the slightly warm loaves.

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