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Prune Walnut Bread

(recipe, Carrie Floyd)

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If you like quick breads — banana, cranberry, zucchini — you'll probably like this one. The prunes, marinated overnight in Madeira, add a lovely scent and taste to the bread. I've adapted this from one of my favorite books, Beard on Bread, adding whole-wheat pastry flour, orange zest, and walnuts to good effect. This makes a nice breakfast or snack, with or without a smear of butter.


  1. 1 cup pitted prunes
  2. ¼ cup Madeira
  3. 2 large eggs
  4. 1 cup milk
  5. ½ cup sugar
  6. ½ tsp. salt
  7. ½ tsp. cinnamon
  8. 1 cup all-purpose flour
  9. 1 cup whole-wheat pastry flour
  10. 3 tsp. baking powder
  11. Zest of 1 orange
  12. 1 cup walnuts, toasted and coarsely chopped


  1. Marinate the prunes in Madeira overnight, or for 24 hours.
  2. On baking day, drain the prunes, reserving any Madeira that wasn't absorbed by the prunes. Chop the prunes and set them aside.
  3. Generously butter a standard loaf pan. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  4. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, and any Madeira drained from the prunes. Add the sugar, salt, cinnamon, both flours, baking powder, and orange zest, and stir until well blended. Stir in the chopped prunes and walnuts.
  5. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 50 to 60 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean when inserted into the center of the bread. The bread will be quite brown and most likely cracked down the middle. Cool in pan for 5 minutes, then remove from pan and finish cooling on a rack.