Strawberry Christmas Bread with crisped pecan topping
A purée of fresh strawberries are mixed into this Christmas Bread, for a lightly sweetened flavor, that is wildly delicious. A Christmas Bread recipe that is everything a Christmas Bread should be. Each piece is decadently moist, with a fluffy, and somewhat airy texture. The top is perfectly crisped, and filled with a pleasingly nutty pecan crunch. It is a true holiday treat, worthy of sharing at any Christmas table. And you’ll never believe it, but there is NOT a single drop of butter in this recipe! For real.
I’ve been toying with muffin recipes for about 5 years now, always changing and tweaking a little something. Sometimes it’s better, sometimes it’s worse, and occasionally I change it completely, and turn the recipe into a bread! But after this time around, I don’t think I’ll be tweaking the recipe any longer. The recipe is done. This is the first time I’ve tried puréeing fruit, and the result was a perfect light and airy muffin ( or bread) .
The secret to the light and airy texture in this Christmas Bread, is actually NOT in the puréed fruit.
There are two things that will highly assist a muffin, or bread recipe, in achieving that perfect light and airy texture.
1. Do NOT over mix the batter. In fact, under mix. Even allowing a few bits of flour to show through the batter is completely ok.
2. Allow for a brief “rest and bloom” period. Let the batter sit for about 5 minuets or so before baking, and you will notice it will start to fluff up and bloom.
Spoon out 1 cup of batter and mix with a little extra sugar, flour and pecans to create the crisped pecan topping.
I bet this recipe would work with other puréed fruits. Maybe peaches, or plumbs, raspberries, apple, or banana? If you try another fruit let me know!
Update: With a few slight tweets, Pineapple and zucchini work great in this recipe.