Recipe—Almond Poppy Seed Bread

There are several occasions throughout the year when I am scrambling to put together a brunch menu, Easter, Christmas, etc. One staple item I always have is some sort of breakfast loaf. I love making breakfast loaves because I can have them done the day before, giving me one less thing to worry about the morning I am entertaining. This glazed almond poppy seed loaf is a classic recipe. It is super simple (you literally throw all the ingredients in a bowl and mix) and goes with everything from a simple cup of joe, to a full brunch spread.

Note: This batter works great for almond poppy seed muffins too. Just follow the directions as written but use greased muffin pans instead of bread pans and bake for 18–23 minutes.

3 c flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
3 eggs
1 1/4 c cooking oil
2 1/4 c sugar
1 1/2 c milk
2 tbsp poppy seeds
1 1/2 tsp almond extract
1 1/2 tsp vanilla

1/4 c butter, melted
1/2 tsp almond extract
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 tbsp water
1 1/2–2 c powdered sugar
1/2 c sliced almonds (optional)


  • Preheat oven to 350º.
  • Mix all of the bread ingredients together.
  • Pour the batter into greased 2 loaf pans.
  • Bake for 50–60 minutes or until a toothpick when inserted comes out almost clean. (I like my bread moist so I pull it out when the toothpick still has a little bit of crumbly residue on it. A totally clean toothpick will mean a dryer loaf.)
  • After removing the loaves from the oven, place the sliced almonds on a baking sheet and roast them for 3 minutes or until they just start to turn a golden color.
  • Allow loaves to sit for 15 minutes after removing from the oven.
  • Gently remove loaves from pans and place on a cutting board or cooling rack to cool.
  • Once the bread has completely cooled, combine the melted butter, almond extract, vanilla, water, and powdered sugar in a bowl and whisk until smooth. (Start with 1 1/2 cups of powdered sugar and add more as needed to get desired consistency. I like mine slightly runny so it drips down the sides when drizzling over the bread.)
  • Drizzle the frosting over the bread and then immediately sprinkle with the roasted sliced almonds.

Recipe—Dutch Apple Pie Muffins

The last couple of weeks I have had some beautiful apples in my produce boxes. Not quite enough to make applesauce or an apple pie though. So I thought, why not try to whip up some apple pie muffins! This recipe calls for brown sugar rather than any white sugar giving them a rich caramel apple flavor. These are not your typical light and fluffy muffins, they are actually dense and really moist, sort of like a pound cake. A perfect treat to enjoy during chilly fall mornings with a big cup of joe. Not that we have had any mornings like that this season in California though. My Halloween decorations are up and I don’t think we have had a day under 90º. This girl is ready to break out her scarves and boots! Nonetheless, I will continue pretending like it’s fall weather when cooking in my kitchen. This weekend I am headed up to Apple Hill for our annual family pumpkin picking trip where I will be sure to get a big bag of apples. My next mission, crock-pot applesauce!

Note: This recipe makes one dozen delicious muffins.

1/2 c brown sugar
7 tbsp flour
1/4 c butter, softened
1 tsp cinnamon

1 1/2 c brown sugar
2/3 c oil
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla
1 c sour cream
2 1/2 c flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt
2 c diced apples


  • Preheat oven to 350º.
  • Grease your muffin pan or line with paper muffin cups.
  • In a small bowl combine all topping ingredients and mix until crumbly. Set aside.
  • In a large bowl mix together sugar, oil, egg, vanilla, and sour cream.
  • In a separate bowl sift together the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt.
  • Slowly stir the flour mixture into the batter until combined.
  • Add the diced apples mixing until evenly distributed.
  • Distribute the batter among the 12 muffin tins. It’s okay if they are fairly full. These do not swell up really big.
  • Generously sprinkle the muffins with the topping.
  • Bake for 30 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean when inserted in the middle.
  • Allow muffins to cool in pan for 5–8 minutes before removing and then transfer to a cooling rack or cutting board.