Baking Some Sunshine with Sweet Homemade Bread

My best friend is moving away.  And it breaks my heart.

We’ve known each other for 13 years and the list of things we share in common is staggering…we both have two little ones the same ages…we both come from relatively large families…our husbands have been best friends for years…we like the same crappy reality TV shows…we can sing every word to every Dixie Chicks song…she even sees the value in cloth diapering!

Her wonderful sister and I hosted a farewell dinner last night, and it was a lovely gathering with close friends and family.  I knew I wanted to make a homemade favor for our guests to take home, but I was having a hard time coming up with something appropriate.  Considering that I’ve been on the verge of tears knowing that my best friend, my husband’s best friend and my daugther’s best friend are leaving in less than two weeks, I thought it would be wise to make something bright and cheerful.

The perfect treat?  My mom’s poppy seed bread with a citrus glaze.  A little burst of sunshine!

My Mom’s Poppy Seed Bread with Citrus Glaze

3 eggs

2 1/2 cups sugar

1 1/2 cup milk

1 cup canola oil (I use 2 sticks of melted butter instead)

1 1/2 teaspoon almond extract (I like using a full tablespoon)

1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract (I use homemade vanilla extract – so easy and economical!)

1 1/2 teaspoon butter extract

3 cups flour

1 1/2 teaspoon salt

1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder

2 tablespoons poppy seeds


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a large bowl, mix eggs, sugar, milk, canola oil and extracts.  In a separate bowl, combine flour, salt baking powder and poppy seeds.  Pour dry ingredients into wet mixture and stir well.

Pour into two loaf pans (or 8 mini loaf pans like I did for last night’s party) and bake in preheated oven for 55 minutes (or 30 minutes for little loaves) or until knife inserted in center comes out clean.

While the loaves are still warm, top with this Citrus Glaze: stir together 3/4 cup sugar, 1/4 cup fresh squeeze orange juice, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract, 1/2 teaspoon almond extract and 1/2 teaspoon butter extract.  I also like to add some fresh orange zest for color and additional flavor.

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2 Comments for this entry

  1. Courtney says:

    What??? I can’t believe she’s moving. I’m so sorry. I hope she has an exciting reason for the move.

  2. Mary says:

    Maureen, I was so sad for you when I was reading this entry… Such a bummer that you guys won’t be in the same city any more. I know you will miss her, but your kind of friendship will always pick up where it left off 🙂 Thinking of you!

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