Dark and delicious, this quick bread features the spices of Russian-Mennonite peppernuts, or spice cookies: star anise, cinnamon, nutmeg, and black pepper. Grind the star anise in a coffee or spice grinder.
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon grated whole nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground star anise
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 cup apple butter
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup honey
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
1/2 cup golden raisins
2 tablespoons sliced almonds, divided
How to Make It
Preheat oven to 325°.
Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine flour and next 6 ingredients (through pepper) in a large bowl, stirring with a whisk. Add apple butter, sugar, honey, and eggs; stir with a whisk until well combined. Fold in raisins and 1 tablespoon almonds.
Spoon batter into a 9 x 5-inch loaf pan coated with cooking spray. Sprinkle with 1 tablespoon of almonds. Bake at 325° for 35 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Loosen bread from sides of pan using a narrow metal spatula; turn out onto a wire rack; cool.
Delicious! Didn't have star anise so I subbed Chinese Five-Spice Powder, which contains star anise, and subbed about 2 tablespoons melted butter for some of the apple butter so it wouldn't be too dry per another review. Next time, I might sub some buttermilk or light sour cream for richer flavor. Recipe says 35 minutes but mine took about 45 minutes. Definitely worth making again!
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