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Honeyed Pomegranate Bread Recipe

pomegranate bread slices on plate
pomegranate bread slices on plate - Michelle Bottalico/Tasting Table

Quick breads like banana bread are always popular for a sweet breakfast, snack, or dessert. Pomegranate bread is a lesser-known take, and it does not disappoint. Pomegranates, an ancient fruit with a long history, reveal a large quantity of bright red, juicy arils when opened. This special ingredient adds a touch of beauty and sophistication to a classic quick bread.

Recipe developer Michelle Bottalico has created a recipe for a honeyed pomegranate bread that's moist and sweet, with lovely visual appeal. Bottalico drew on her interest in replacing refined sugar with other ingredients when she created this bread, which uses honey. It adds a nice level of sweetness without taking it over the top. Mashed pear adds a little more sweetness as well as additional moisture. The texture is enlivened with cashews, which are not only nice and crunchy but have a deeper flavor from being toasted before added to the batter.

Last but not least, the pomegranate arils provide bursts of sweetness to bites of this cake, not to mention a beautiful deep red color that makes it even more compelling. Your kitchen will smell delightful when you're making this bread, first when toasting the nuts and then while the bread is baking. If you're a fan of banana bread and would like to branch out, this beautiful honeyed pomegranate bread is a great place to start.

Read more: 12 Popular Grocery Store Butter Brands, Ranked

Gather Your Honeyed Pomegranate Bread Ingredients

pomegranate bread ingredients on table
pomegranate bread ingredients on table - Michelle Bottalico/Tasting Table

For this recipe, you will need pomegranate arils. They can be purchased separately or removed from one or two pomegranates, depending on the size. Choose a ripe pomegranate for the juiciest arils. The other fruit you'll need is a ripe Bartlett pear. Grab some raw cashews for crunch and honey to sweeten the bread. You'll use butter, all-purpose flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, an egg, and vanilla extract to make the batter. Lastly, make sure you have ground cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger to infuse the batter with a warm and inviting flavor.

Step 1: Cook The Pear

diced pear cooking in saucepan
diced pear cooking in saucepan - Michelle Bottalico/Tasting Table

Place the diced pear in a small saucepan with some water (about a 1/2 cup) and bring to a simmer. Cook, covered, for 5 to 15 minutes until tender, adding more water if needed. Stir occasionally to help break up the pear, and mash it with a fork at the end.

Step 2: Measure Out The Mashed Pear

mashed pear on white plate
mashed pear on white plate - Michelle Bottalico/Tasting Table

Measure out ½ cup of the mashed pear. Set aside. You may have a small amount left over.

Step 3: Toast The Cashews

cashews toasting in frying pan
cashews toasting in frying pan - Michelle Bottalico/Tasting Table

Place the cashews in a pan and toast on medium heat for 3 to 5 minutes until they're slightly darkened and fragrant. Watch closely so they don't burn.

Step 4: Chop The Cashews

chopped cashews in small bowl
chopped cashews in small bowl - Michelle Bottalico/Tasting Table

Remove the cashews from the heat and roughly chop. Set aside.

Step 5: Preheat The Oven

oven display showing preheat symbol
oven display showing preheat symbol - Michelle Bottalico/Tasting Table

Preheat the oven to 325 F.

Step 6: Grease A Loaf Pan

greased loaf pan on table
greased loaf pan on table - Michelle Bottalico/Tasting Table

Grease a 9x5-inch loaf pan with butter.

Step 7: Melt The Butter

melted butter in small bowl
melted butter in small bowl - Michelle Bottalico/Tasting Table

Melt the butter. Set aside.

Step 8: Whisk The Dry Ingredients

flour mixture in white bowl
flour mixture in white bowl - Michelle Bottalico/Tasting Table

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and salt.

Step 9: Whisk The Wet Ingredients

melted butter mixture in bowl
melted butter mixture in bowl - Michelle Bottalico/Tasting Table

In a second bowl, add the mashed pear, egg, honey, vanilla, and melted butter. Whisk to combine.

Step 10: Combine The Wet And Dry Ingredients

cake batter in white bowl
cake batter in white bowl - Michelle Bottalico/Tasting Table

Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and stir until just combined. Do not overmix.

Step 11: Fold In The Arils And Nuts

textured cake batter in bowl
textured cake batter in bowl - Michelle Bottalico/Tasting Table

Fold in the pomegranate arils and cashews.

Step 12: Pour Batter Into The Pan

cake batter in loaf pan
cake batter in loaf pan - Michelle Bottalico/Tasting Table

Pour the mixture into the greased loaf pan.

Step 13: Bake The Bread

baked pomegranate bread in pan
baked pomegranate bread in pan - Michelle Bottalico/Tasting Table

Bake for 35 to 40 minutes in the middle rack of the oven until the top is browned and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Step 14: Cool And Serve The Honeyed Pomegranate Bread

pomegranate bread on wooden table
pomegranate bread on wooden table - Michelle Bottalico/Tasting Table

Let the bread cool in the pan for 10 to 15 minutes. Carefully remove the loaf from the pan and transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Serve warm or at room temperature.

What Kind Of Pears Can I Use To Make Honeyed Pomegranate Bread?

5 pears on wooden table
5 pears on wooden table - Michelle Bottalico/Tasting Table

If you're wondering which of the many pear varieties will work well in this pomegranate bread, know that you have several options. The reason we use pears in this recipe is to add additional moisture and sweetness. We found Bartlett pears, also known as Williams pears, to be ideal because they are quite juicy and sweet. If Bartlett pears are not available, Bosc or Anjou pears will also work because they have similar qualities.

We recommend you buy the pears ahead and wait for them to ripen before making this bread. Ripe pears will be juicier and have a sweeter flavor, and since it's not just the honey but also the pear's sweetness that flavor the bread, this is important. Ripe pears also won't take as long to cook. If you only have unripe pears on hand and can't wait to make the recipe, you'll need to cook the diced pear longer. Keep an eye on the pot, adding more water if it all evaporates, and testing the pears with a fork to check for tenderness. If the unripe pears don't taste sweet, you can opt to add a small amount of honey.

Can I Substitute Ingredients In This Honeyed Pomegranate Bread Recipe?

pomegranate bread on wooden table
pomegranate bread on wooden table - Michelle Bottalico/Tasting Table

We like the way the flavors come together in this recipe as written, but if you don't have some of the ingredients or would like to try another version, you can certainly make substitutions. The bread calls for cashews, but you could use macadamia nuts, walnuts, or hazelnuts. We don't recommend almonds because of their hardness. On the other hand, if you're not a fan of nuts in cake, you can just leave them out. While pomegranate arils are a main feature of this bread, pomegranates are not always available. Good alternatives include dried fruits like apricots, cherries, blueberries, or raisins.

This bread is made with honey instead of sugar, so if you want to replace the honey with a different sweetener, make sure it's a liquid like maple syrup or agave nectar. If you prefer to use white sugar, know that it's not a 1 to 1 swap. A cup of sugar is equal to ½ to ⅔ cup honey, so this recipe would use about a ½ cup of sugar. It's also easy to make this bread vegan if you like. Swap the butter for margarine or coconut oil. Instead of the egg, make a flax egg by mixing 1 tablespoon of ground flax seeds with 3 tablespoons of hot water. Let the mixture sit for 5 minutes to gel before using it just like the egg and mixing it with the other wet ingredients.

Honeyed Pomegranate Bread Recipe

pomegranate bread served on table
pomegranate bread served on table - Michelle Bottalico/Tasting Table

Prep Time: 30mCook Time: 50mYield: 1 LoafIngredients

  • 1 ripe Bartlett pear, peeled, cored, and diced

  • ½ cup raw cashews

  • ¼ cup butter, plus more for greasing the loaf pan

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour

  • ¾ teaspoon baking powder

  • ½ teaspoon baking soda

  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

  • ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg

  • ¼ teaspoon ground ginger

  • ¼ teaspoon salt

  • 1 egg

  • ⅓ cup honey

  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

  • ½ cup pomegranate arils

Directions

  1. Place the diced pear in a small saucepan with some water (about a ½ cup) and bring to a simmer. Cook, covered, for 5-15 minutes until tender, adding more water if needed. Stir occasionally to help break up the pear, and mash it with a fork at the end.

  2. Measure out ½ cup of the mashed pear. Set aside. You may have a small amount left over.

  3. Place the cashews in a pan and toast on medium heat for 3 to 5 minutes until they're slightly darkened and fragrant. Watch closely so they don't burn.

  4. Remove the cashews from the heat and roughly chop. Set aside.

  5. Preheat the oven to 325 F.

  6. Grease a 9x5-inch loaf pan with butter.

  7. Melt the butter. Set aside.

  8. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and salt.

  9. In a second bowl, add the mashed pear, egg, honey, vanilla, and melted butter. Whisk to combine.

  10. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and stir until just combined. Do not overmix.

  11. Fold in the pomegranate arils and cashews.

  12. Pour the mixture into the greased loaf pan.

  13. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes in the middle rack of the oven until the top is browned and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

  14. Let the bread cool in the pan for 10 to 15 minutes. Carefully remove the loaf from the pan and transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Read the original article on Tasting Table.