Berry Lemon Loaf

cut loaf

Berries are starting to come into season (well, at least in California, or wherever we get our berries from) and they are just so tempting in the grocery store.  I cannot walk past the produce section without picking up a few containers of raspberries, blackberries and / or strawberries.  It doesn’t help that they are right near the door and often have signs “2 for $5”!  The sale signs are just too exciting and suddenly I have gone through the cash with far too many berries to eat.

Although this loaf can be made as just a lemon loaf, I like to add berries.  You can make it with fresh or frozen berries and serve it with extra berries on top (oh, and whipped cream!).  If you, like me, find yourself with way too many berries about to go bad, just wash, air dry and then freeze them (in a single layer on a cookie sheet works well – then transfer them to a container or baggie) and they’ll be ready to use later.  If you’re using frozen berries, add them frozen.  Otherwise they will be a mushy mess in the loaf and turn the loaf blue (or red).

loaf with whipped cream

Berry Lemon Loaf from Starting Out

What you need:
    1/4 cup butter, softened
    1 cup sugar
    grated zest of 1-2 lemons
    2 large eggs
    1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
    1 teaspoon baking powder
    1/4 teaspoon salt
    1/2 cup milk
    1 1/2 cups blackberries, raspberries or blueberries

for the glaze:
    3 Tbsp lemon juice
    1/4 cup icing sugar

What to do:
Preheat the oven to 350F.  Spray a loaf pan with non-stick spray.

In a large bowl, beat the butter, sugar and lemon zest with an electric mixer until fluffy.  Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.

In a small bowl, combine the flour, baking powder and salt.  Add one-third of the flour mixture to the wet ingredients and stir just until combined.  Then add half of the milk and combine.  Then add another third of the flour mixture, the rest of the milk and the rest of the flour mixture with the berries.  Stir by hand until the batter is blended.

Pour (or scrape out of the bowl) the batter into the loaf pan.  Bake for about an hour*, until it’s cracked and golden and a toothpick or cake tester inserted comes out batter-free.

Poke the loaf all over the top with a toothpick, fork or skewer.  Stir together the lemon juice and icing sugar and brush the glaze over the top of the loaf while it is still in the pan.  Once it has all been absorbed, run a knife around the edge of the pan and invert the loaf onto a wire rack (then put it right side up).  Cool completely.

*I find the best way to make sure a loaf is cooked through is to take it out of the oven and check on it every 10-15 minutes, starting about 45 minutes in.  It takes a little longer (usually about 1 hour and 15 minutes) to bake, but then it’s not burnt on the outside or soggy in the middle.

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