Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Homemade Gift Idea - Cranberry Apple Quick Bread

With the economy still struggling, homemade gifts are on the rise. That's a boon for bakers. After all, who doesn't love fresh baked goods? So, when I was asked to come up with a homemade gift idea using dairy products for teachers as part of the California Milk Advisory Board and Smart & Final "Help Our Teachers, Help Our Kids" campaign to help southern CA schools, I was excited to come up with a new recipe.

Just to recap the program, now through December 31st, students and families can collect Real California milk seals from select Smart & Final First Street products (everything from milk to butter to ice cream) and bring them to school.
That little yellow & black logo is what you're looking for!

Teachers can then collect and submit the seals to be entered in a sweepstakes to win up to $2 million in cash, books and other prizes for their classrooms. Teachers who submit 100 seals get 25 Scholastic books or a $25 school supply gift card. And every teacher gets a Scholastic book just for entering. You can visit to learn more.

I usually bake lots of cookies as homemade gifts around the holidays, but this time I decided to go for something a little different. After happening upon a display of fresh cranberries at Smart & Final (you can check out my shopping trip here), I came up with a Cranberry Apple Quick Bread, which is a little less sweet and more of a breakfast item - giving those busy teachers a well deserved break one holiday morning.

What makes this quick bread extra special is the addition of sour cream, which keeps it very moist and gives it a subtle richness. I also baked the bread in a stoneware loaf pan, which then becomes part of the gift. Wrap it all up in red plastic wrap with a pretty ribbon or bow - and you've got a great gift for a deserving teacher (or neighbor or anyone else for that matter!).

Cranberry Apple Quick Bread
Makes 1 9" x 5" loaf

1 stick (1/2 c.) First Street salted butter
3/4 c. granulated sugar
2 eggs
3/4 c. First Street sour cream
2 tsp. vanilla extract
2 c. all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1 large apple, peeled and chopped
1 1/2 c. fresh cranberries

Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease 9" x 5" loaf pan well with vegetable oil or butter.
Cream butter and sugar. Beat in eggs, sour cream and vanilla.
In a separate bowl, mix flour, baking powder and baking soda. Stir into wet ingredients just until combined.
Fold chopped apple and cranberries into batter until evenly distributed (don't over mix).
Bake at 350°F for 50-55 minutes or until top is browned and toothpick inserted comes out clean.

This #SmartFinalSupportsSoCalSchools project has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for  #collectivebias #CBias.


Amy @ The Mom Hood said...

Love this! Always looking for new recipes for gift-giving!

Brandie @ Home Cooking Memories said...

Very yummy! Breads with cranberries are my absolute favorite.

Rita said...

Love this great recipe; cranberries in a quick bread spells real good for me.

My Thirty Spot said...

This bread look and sound amazing. I would love it if you came to link to my holiday recipe swap blog hop. It is my first ever! Love these recipes.
-Erin Kennedy

lilrunner said...

whoa I love this idea. So I've had fresh cranberries in my fridge for over a month. I wonder what the shelf life is??? thanks for sharing. It looks great!