A beautiful golden and healthier blueberry quick bread that is moist, delicious, and full of crunchy pecans. A healthier berry applesauce loaf cake that freezes well.
If you need a not-too-sweet snacking cake this is it.
Each bite has juicy blueberries bursting and crunchy pecans. It doesn't even need a dusting of powdered sugar.
With a muffin-like consistency due to the applesauce, it's easy to put together and makes me feel healthy. It must be that whole wheat flour in the batter.
- Oil: it's used as a replacement of butter and it makes batters very moist. In my opinion, Sunflower and canola are the most neutral in flavor, but I sometimes use olive oil, and you can use coconut oil. It's a small amount.
- Whole wheat flour: use a superfine flour, one that is pretty much like all-purpose flour consistency-wise. If you use coarser flour, the crumb will be different, it'll have more texture. So keep that in mind. It gives this cake a wonderful earthiness.
- White whole wheat flour: it's in between the refined all-purpose and the whole wheat flour.
- Baking powder and baking soda: are used as leaveners to help the bread rise, so make sure they aren't expired.
- Applesauce: it adds moisture without calories. You can use homemade applesauce, store-bought, or even grate an apple or two with a fine-holed grater.
- Blueberries: use either fresh or frozen (straight from the freezer).
- Pecans: they give the cake a wonderful crunch. You can also use walnuts or other nuts like almonds and hazelnuts.
- Organization: read the recipe first and ensure you have ingredients at the correct temperature, equipment, and enough workspace. This will make the process so much easier.
- Baking time: consider that all ovens and pans are different, even if they look similar. The baking time in my recipes is as accurate as it can be, but it might take you more or less time. You can use a thermometer(like the OXO oven thermometer) to check that your oven is at the right temperature. I recommend you keep track of how your oven works and what tiny details you might need to adjust.
- Pan size: this recipe can be made in one loaf pan as I did here, in muffin cups, mini loaf pans, or even as a sheet cake.
- Decoration: I like to add a row of pecan halves and sprinkle with a tablespoon of brown sugar before baking (image below). You can omit it of course.
- Storing: always wrap it in plastic to ensure it stays moist. It lasts for a few days at room temperature as long as it's not hot. Apples ferment at some point so keep this in mind.
- Freezing: wrap it well and freeze it for 1 month. I cut it before and then toast individual slices.
- Spices: add any other spice you like; ground cinnamon always works with these flavors.
It's the kind of not-too-sweet loaf that appeals to everyone, good as a snack, with a cup of coffee, tea or to give as a gift.
You can substitute pear puree for the apple.
Also, this recipe is easily doubled. Maybe eat one and freeze the other?
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- ¾ cups (85g) pecans, lightly toasted if you want to
- 1 cup fresh or frozen blueberries (I used them frozen, directly from the freezer)
- 1 cup sifted all-purpose flour
- ½ cup superfine whole wheat flour
- ½ tablespoon baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon mace or freshly grated nutmeg (optional)
- 1 egg
- ¼ cup of vegetable oil
- ½ cup + 1 tablespoon sugar (coconut, fine muscovado, or brown sugar)
- ½ cup unsweetened applesauce (I use my recipe for homemade applesauce), or finely grate a peeled apple until you have ½ cup
- 2 teaspoons lemon juice
- Reserve a few pecans for the top of the loaf, and finely chop the rest.
- Preheat oven to 350º.
- Butter or spray 1 medium loaf pans (9x3 inches)
- Sprinkle with ground nuts coating evenly. Or dust with flour or fine dry breadcrumbs.
- Remove and reserve 1 Tbs of the flour.
- Sift remainder white flour, whole wheat flour, baking powder, salt, and spice. (I measure the dry ingredients and then sift them directly over the egg mixture).
- In a large bowl beat together eggs, oil, and ½ cup sugar.
- Add applesauce and lemon juice and mix well.
- Add dry ingredients without beating too much.
- Mix blueberries with the tablespoon of flour and add to the egg mixture.
- Add chopped pecans and mix.
- Pour this batter into the prepared pan, smoothing top.
- Sprinkle with any remaining ground pecans and 2 Tbs sugar, and arrange whole pieces decoratively on top if you want.
- Bake for 45 to 55 minutes, until a tester comes out clean.
- Cool on a wire rack for 15 minutes, then unmold and let cool completely.
Pan size - this recipe can be made in one loaf pan as I did here, in muffin cups, mini loaf pans, or even as a sheet cake.
Decoration - I like to add a row of pecan halves and sprinkle with a tablespoon of brown sugar before baking. You can omit it of course.
Keeping - always wrap it in plastic to ensure it stays moist. It lasts for a few days at room t° as long as it's not hot. Apples ferment at some point so keep this in mind.
Freezing - wrap it well and freeze it for 1 month. I cut it before and then toast individual slices.
Spices - add any other spice you like, ground cinnamon always works with these flavors.
You can substitute pear puree for the apple.
Also, this recipe is easily doubled. Maybe eat one and freeze the other?.
- Prep Time: 20
- Cook Time: 40
- Category: Loaf cake
- Method: Baking
- Cuisine: American
- Serving Size: ⅛
- Calories: 282
- Sugar: 16.3 g
- Sodium: 235.6 mg
- Fat: 14.6 g
- Carbohydrates: 36.5 g
- Fiber: 2.8 g
- Protein: 4.4 g
- Cholesterol: 23.3 mg
Keywords: applesauce blueberry bread
Adapted from Cakes, by Maida Heatter