Over a Cup of Coffee with Diane Prather: 2 Christmas bread recipes | CraigDailyPress.com

Over a Cup of Coffee with Diane Prather: 2 Christmas bread recipes

Diane Prather/For Craig Press

Different kinds of breads make wonderful Christmas gifts. They're great served at open houses, parties, and holiday dinners, too. This week's column features two bread recipes. The recipes come from my cookbook without a cover (and some pages, as well).

Do you have recipes you would like to share with readers? If so, please call me at 970-824-8809 or write to me at PO Box 415, Craig, CO 81626.

Best ever banana bread

1/2 cup butter or margarine

1 cup granulated sugar

2 eggs

1 cup mashed ripe bananas

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2 cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/3 cup chocolate chips

1/3 cup raisins

1/3 cup maraschino cherries

1/3 cup chopped nuts

Cream butter and sugar in a large mixing bowl until they are light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating after each addition. Add bananas, and beat well. Stir in the flour, baking soda and salt. Add the chocolate chips, raisins, nuts and cherries. Stir well with a spatula. Pour batter into a greased 9x5x3-inch loaf pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 45 to 50 minutes or until done. Let cool slightly in the pan. Remove from pan and allow to cool on a rack.

* Though the recipe doesn't call for it, maraschino cherries probably should be halved or chopped.

Pumpkin bread

Mix together in a large mixing bowl and set aside:

3 cups granulated sugar

4 eggs, beaten

1 (16-ounce) can pumpkin

1 cup Wesson oil

1/2 cup water

Mix in a separate bowl:

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

2 teaspoons baking soda

1 1/2 teaspoons salt

1 1/2 teaspoons cloves

1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon

3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1 cup chopped English walnuts

Add the dry ingredients to the pumpkin mixture. Mix well. Pour into three greased 8×3 1/2 x3-inch pans. Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes.

Cool loaves and wrap in colored cellophane. Tie with brightly-colored ribbon. Yum!