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Home Baking Made Easy: Quick Breads

Home Baking Made Easy:<br>Quick Breads
There's nothing quite like home-baked bread, fresh from the oven. Because quick breads contain no yeast, they are fast and easy to prepare. They also freeze beautifully, so you can keep a loaf or two on hand to serve for breakfast or to guests who drop by. Paired with coffee, tea or sherry, quick breads are a satisfying treat. Tuck loaves inside decorative boxes and they become special gifts for friends and family.

We've selected five quick bread recipes, including traditional and contemporary ones, that offer a range of flavors and textures. Citrus fruit stars in two of our classic breads—one is enlivened with orange zest, the other with lemon. Both breads are drizzled with citrus syrup, which adds a refreshing tang. Our almond bread, laced with poppy seeds, gets a flavor boost from almond paste.

For something a bit different, try the sour cream-maple bread, enriched with sour cream and sweetened with maple syrup. The hearty fig-date bread makes an excellent addition to an after-dinner cheese plate and is especially good topped with cream cheese.

Quick bread batter is very versatile. Instead of baking one standard-size loaf, as these recipes suggest, you can make mini-loaves or even muffins (you will need to adjust the baking time). Whatever shape they take, quick breads are proof of how easy home baking can be.