Friday, October 26, 2012

Aunt Ellen Trueax's Pineapple Nut Bread


I forgot I had some of Aunt Ellen's recipes she'd sent me over the years or I would have added these before mine. Ellen was married to grandma Matheson's brother, Dick. Ellen was from near Dayton, Ohio, and she and Dick lived in/around Dayton for years before retiring to Seminole, Florida. Dick died in July 1997, and Ellen died last year (2011).
Dick had been in WWII, enjoyed doing crafts, and they were childless, by choice. Other than this, I don't know what either one did for a living, where they attended church, though I do believe I remember Ellen telling me she went to a Methodist church, or much else about who they were. I know my dad could fill in many blanks, if I but ask him, and perhaps I will and then add those memories to some other recipes I will post. I might have 5-6 recipes she sent me over the years.
I never met either one until one day in 1992 when grandpa called me up and told me they were at his house, and would I like to come over to meet them. I loaded kids in the truck and drove the 20 minutes from the farmhouse to grandpa's and got to meet some very nice people! Cousin Mike was also there as he'd come over when grandpa had called him.
Though they were my great aunt and uncle, I barely knew either one. After I got to meet them, I kept in contact with Ellen by mail a few times per year. She'd write and sometimes send a recipe or two. In February of 1997, dad, Kym, Alice and I traveled to Florida to see my other brother and sister. My brother lived in Largo at the time, which is a suburb of Tampa. Dick and Ellen being in Seminole, were also in a suburb of Tampa, and so we stopped over to visit with them. What sweet and kind people they were! I am so glad I got to know them, though ever so briefly
Though Ellen sent me a few recipes over the years, this is the only one I've tried, and it's been quite a few years since I made it. I remember it was moist, but perhaps not something that appealed to everyone. I am not saying this is bad, but I think you must really like pineapple. Again, it's been so many years ago since I've tried this that my memory is failing me on it.
I think perhaps I will make some of this for Christmas this year in honor of my aunt Ellen. It will make nice gifts, something a little out of the ordinary, and I will think about her as I make it.

Aunt Ellen Trueax's Pineapple Nut Bread

2 cups unbleached flour*
3 tsp. baking powder
1/2 cup sugar
2 eggs, well-beaten
1 cup milk*
1/3 cup real butter, melted and cooled some
1 cup (8 oz can) undrained crushed pineapple in juice
1/2 cup chopped nuts, optional*
                                                                      Oven 350 degrees
Sift flour, baking powder, and sugar; set aside.
Mix eggs with milk, then add cooled butter.
Add pineapple and nuts to egg mixture, then stir in flour mixture, stirring just enough to moisten.
Pour into a well-greased 9"x5" loaf pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour, or till tests clean with a
toothpick. Allow to cool for 10 minutes in pan, invert onto wire rack and put right side up, then allow to cool completely. Wrap well and let sit to ripen for 8 hours or overnight before slicing. Best if cut when 1-2 days old. This will freeze well for up to 2 months. Makes 1 loaf.

The following would be delicious on this bread or other quick breads! I did not get this from Ellen, but came across this years ago and had it on zucchini bread, which was good! You can sub the ginger out with a bit of cinnamon or nutmeg, if you don't like ginger.

Pineapple cream cheese:

4 oz cream cheese, softened to room temperature
4 oz. crushed pineapple in juice
1 tsp. dried ginger

Combine all ingredients, serve with pineapple bread or other quick breads. Keep any leftovers in the refrigerator. Pull out about 30 minutes before you want to use in order to allow the cheese to warm some for a better flavor.

*You could use half unbleached flour and half whole wheat flour.
*I've often thought to use pineapple juice instead of milk.
*You can use walnuts, pecans, or macadamia nuts, which would give this a more Hawaiian feel.
*You could add a 1/2 cup of flaked coconut to this bread for a more tropical taste.


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