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Pear bread is a type of quick, or non-yeast, moist fruit bread made with pears. Similar in texture to banana bread, pear bread can be made with nuts, such as walnuts or almonds, or without. A good breakfast choice, this bread is sometimes described as a comfort food. Usually, it is made at home and is not frequently found commercially.
Made in either a tube pan or loaf pan, pear bread is often topped with powdered sugar or a simple glaze. The pears used for this bread should be ripe and still firm. Once the pears are peeled and cored, they are either chopped or grated. Chopped pears will create a speckled appearance in the finish bread when cut, since the pear pieces can be easily seen throughout the bread. Grated pears will create a more even appearance.
Care should be taken not to cut the pears too early, however. When left exposed to air, they will start to brown. If pears must be cut early, placing them in water will help keep them from browning.
Most of the dry ingredients, such as flour, baking soda, and baking powder, are mixed first. Spices such as cinnamon, ginger, or nutmeg may also be used. If nuts are used, they are tossed with some of the flour mixture and set aside. The other, primarily wet ingredients, are then mixed together in a separate bowl. Eggs, butter or oil, and vanilla or almond extract are common wet ingredients for pear bread.
The pears, sugar, and nuts are also mixed with the wet ingredients before they are combined with the flour mixture. Once thoroughly mixed, the batter is then poured into pans. Most recipes provide enough batter for one tube pan or two loaf pans. Pear bread usually cooks for about an hour.
There are several variations on basic pear bread. For example, honey pear bread is made with honey and brown sugar, as well as white sugar. It also includes more spices, like cloves, than most other pear breads. Spiced pear bread is also made with additional spices and includes molasses as well.
A buttermilk glaze is a popular topping for this bread. Made from buttermilk, sugar, and butter, this glaze also adds flour or cornstarch to help thicken the liquid and vanilla extract for flavoring. To prepare, all ingredients are mixed and then boiled. The glaze is then drizzled over the finished bread.
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