Friday, July 6, 2012

Apricot Oat Bread (Bread Machine!)

My first son was born 3 months early and since the hospital closest to us at the time didn't have a Level 3 NICU, we were driven as quickly as possible to a hospital in Houston that could better attempt to save both of our lives.  
(It worked, Praise the Lord!).

We ended up in Houston for almost exactly 3 months (usually preemies will stay atleast until their "normal" due date) and while there, became fairly familiar with the medical center area.  

One place my mom and I discovered had amazing sandwiches, really big cookies (oh yea), wonderful tea and best of all...bread.  Loaves of wonderful, wonderful bread in many flavors.  
We experimented regularly :-)  

Our favorite by far was their apricot oat bread.  Sliced and heated with butter in a toaster oven?
  A.MA.ZING.  A hearty breakfast bread.  

So a few years ago, I was looking through an old bread machine cookbook and happened upon an apricot bread that I realized I could easily adapt to try and remake that wonderful bread (of which I cannot get where I live).  Success came quickly and easily!  Gotta love bread machines.  Well, gotta love bread, I mean come on!  
So, in a first of what I hope to be several Bread Machine Recipe is my version of Apricot Oat Bread.  Go make some now, I just did ;-)

Apricot Oat Bread 
~ this makes a "large" loaf.  I use the 2lb setting if your machine has these variations~
(Add the following in order as they appear to your bread machine)
1 1/3 c milk/water (I usually do 1 c milk, 1/3 water)
3 Tbs canola oil
3 1/2 Tbs honey
1 egg (lightly beaten then pour in)
2/3 tsp fine sea salt or table salt
1/2 to 2/3 tsp grated lemon peel
1 c whole wheat flour
1 c quick cooking oats
2 c bread flour 
2 tsp bread machine (or rapid rise) yeast
1 c diced dried apricots **(see instructions below!!)

I use the "Fruit and Nut" setting (yours might be Fruit Breads, Raisin Breads, etc...).  
Since my machine kneads first, I go ahead and add the apricots in right away.  If your machine doesn't say "kneading" when it starts up, wait until the first beep and then add the apricots. 
Oh, and go ahead and invest in the $4 jar of bread machine yeast at the store, trust me, we'll be using it this fall!!

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