We moved house over the weekend and it was the single most stressful experience of my life.
Packing up your entire existence whilst caring for a newborn and almost two year old should be an olympic sport.
Looking back and considering the feat, we did pretty well.
And I have to say that settling into our new home feels wonderful.
Especially the kitchen.
The first creation to emerge from my new favourite place is this wonderful little apple, cinnamon and hazelnut loaf.
Loaf cakes have become a bit of a go-to for breakfast of late. Jam packed with fruit and able to be whipped up and in the oven in less than 10 minutes they’re a great breakfast alternative to the usual toast or cereal routine which can get pretty boring after a while.
Today’s apple, cinnamon and hazelnut loaf is not only completely delish but really good for the little ones too. I managed to get 4 apples into this little darling, and because of the natural sweetness from the apples I used a mere half cup of brown sugar in the entire loaf. If you’re keen to skip the sugar completely, simply replace with a half cup of maple or a third cup of agave syrup which would also work beautifully.
The hazelnut meal in this loaf is genius. It not only creates a tender and wholesome crumb but a gorgeous earthy nutty flavour that works beautifully with the classic apple and cinnamon flavour combination. And the smells that wafts from the oven as the loaf bakes to gorgeous goldenness is simply divine. So much so that Miss G. kept hovering around the oven saying ‘yum yum’ until it was finally cooked.
This loaf is also the perfect texture for little ones just beginning their baby led weaning journey. The abundance of apple strewn throughout the loaf creates a dense and moist crumb that won’t be too easily squished by little hands making it simple for beginners to hold and nibble on with ease. Just slice the loaf into thick batons and your little one should have no trouble at all.
This apple, cinnamon and hazelnut loaf also freezes wonderfully. Simply slice and wrap individual pieces in a little cling wrap, pop into a freezer safe container and stash in the deep freeze for up to 3 months. Allow to thaw by simply resting on the bench or in a lunch box.
To create your own apple, cinnamon and hazelnut loaf simply…
Begin by preheating your oven to 180 degrees celsius (350F). Grate 2 apples into a large mixing bowl.
Add the eggs, yoghurt, oil, sugar, vanilla and whisk to combine.
Add the flour, hazelnut meal, baking powder and cinnamon and stir until just combined.
Thinly slice 2 apples.
Pour the batter into a loaf pan lined with baking paper, top with the sliced apple and sprinkle with a dusting of cinnamon. Pop into the oven to bake for 45-50 minutes or until a skewer inserted removes cleanly. If you find your cake is browning a little too quickly and is not cooked through, simply cover in foil and continue baking until cooked through.
Allow to cool for 10 minutes or so before removing from the tin to cool completely on a wire rack.
Cut into thin slices and serve alongside fresh berries for a lovely baby led weaning breakfast or morning tea.
apple, cinnamon & hazelnut loaf
This cake is best stored in the refrigerator.
2 small apples (or 1 large), plus 2 for the top of the cake
1 cup yoghurt
3/4 cup lightly flavoured olive oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup brown sugar, tightly packed
1 1/2 cups plain flour
3 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/2 cup hazelnut meal
2 teaspoons cinnamon, plus a teaspoon to dust over the cake
Preheat oven to 180 degrees ceslius (350F). Grate 2 apples into a large mixing bowl. Add the yoghurt, eggs, oil, vanilla and sugar and whisk to combine. Add the plain flour, baking powder, hazelnut meal and cinnamon and fold until just combined. Thinly slice the remaining 2 apples. Pour the cake batter into a loaf tin lined with baking paper, top with the thinly sliced apples, sprinkle over the remaining cinnamon and bake for 45-50 minutes or until a skewer inserted removes cleanly. If you find your cake is browning too quickly and is still not cooked through, simply cover in foil and continue to bake until cooked. Allow the cake to cool for 10 minutes or so before removing from the tin to cool completely on a wire rack. Serve thin slices alongside a little fruit for a lovely little baby led weaning breakfast or morning tea. Keep the loaf stored in the refrigerator. Enjoy x
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