Berry Bread with Spread #TwelveLoaves April

Berry Bread | Bakewell Junction

Berry Bread | Bakewell Junction

For this month’s #Twelve Loaves linky party, the theme is berries.  Now I don’t normally make bread with berries, so I needed to find a recipe that I would like – not an easy task since I’m kind of picky.  As it happens, I found this recipe on Taste of Home and both my husband and I liked it.  The bread is sweet and moist with a lovely flavor.  I’ll definitely make this again.

It was a little odd with the frozen strawberries was that there seemed to be more liquid than strawberries but it turned out well, so who am I to question?  Also, the spread can be used on regular toast or bagels.


Berry Bread

Yield:  2 Loaves                  Cook Time:  50 minutes

  • 2 10 ounce packages frozen and sweetened sliced strawberries, thawed (I couldn’t find this size, so I bought 16 ounce packages and saved the extra)
  • 3 cups flour
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup canola oil (I substituted olive oil)
  • 3 ounces macadamia nuts, optional (I skipped the nuts)


  • 1 8 ounce package cream cheese, softened
  • 3 tablespoons strawberries


Step 1:  For the bread:  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Spray two 8 by 4 inch loaf pans with cooking spray.  Drain the strawberries.  Set 1/4 cup of the strawberry juice aside.  Set 3 tablespoons of the berries aside to be used for the spread.

Step 2:  Mix the flour, sugar, salt and baking soda in a large bowl.  In a medium bowl, mix together the eggs, oil, 1/4 cup of juice and the remaining berries.  Stir the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients to create a stiff batter.  Do not over mix.  If using, fold in the nuts.

Step 3:  Divide the batter evenly and place in the loaf pans.  Bake for 50 to 55 minutes.  When done, a toothpick inserted in the bread will come out clean.

Step 4:  For the spread:  While the bread bakes.  Soften the cream cheese in the microwave in small increments. Beat the 3 tablespoons of strawberries set aside earlier into the cream cheese.  Keep the spread in the refrigerator until ready to serve.

Storing:  Store loaves in a sealed plastic container or covered with plastic wrap.


Recipe from Taste of Home by Pat Stewart, Lees Summit, Missouri.

What is baking this April in the TwelveLoaves kitchens?  Berry Breads!

#TwelveLoaves April:  Berries.  Bake a bread, yeast or quick bread, loaf or individual.  This #TwelveLoaves is all about breads featuring beautiful berries!  Think luscious quick loaves, sinful scones, delightful Danishes.  Any way you want to feature your berries, we want to see it.  Let’s get baking!

Look at what our very talented #TwelveLoaves bakers have created this April!

We would love to have you join our #TwelveLoaves group; it’s easy!
1. When you post your Twelve Loaves bread on your blog, make sure that you mention the Twelve Loaves challenge in your blog post; this helps us to get more members as well as share everyone’s posts. Please make sure that your Bread is inspired by the theme!
2. Please link your post to the linky tool at the bottom of my blog. It must be a bread baked to the Twelve Loaves theme.
3. Have your Twelve Loaves bread that you baked this April 2013 posted on your blog by April 30, 2013.

You are next… Click here to enter

Lora launched this Twelve Loaves this past May and there have been many wonderful recipes shared since then.  I haven’t participated from the beginning but it’s been fun the past few months that I have participated.
Check out what we have been busy baking!

May theme: Focaccia
June theme: Corn Rolls
July theme: Challah
August theme: Summer Fruit
September: Say CHEESE!
October: Seeds, nuts and grains
November: Autumn Fruits: Apples and Pears
December: Boozy Bread
January: Clean Slate
February: Open Challenge
March: Holiday Breads

Follow @TwelveLoaves on Twitter

See what’s freshly baked for #TwelveLoaves on the growing Pinterest board.

This post may also be entered in the following linky party. Click the button below to see the other great posts in the blog hop.

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Buttermilk Chocolate Chip Hot Cross Buns #Chocolateparty

Buttermilk Chocolate Chip Hot Cross Buns #chocolateparty by Bakewell Junction

Buttermilk Chocolate Chip Hot Cross Buns #chocolateparty by Bakewell Junction

Easter has come and gone but I think Hot Cross Buns are a great treat any time of year.  This is the second time I made this recipe and I made some changes this time because the first time they didn’t turn out so well (at least to my definition of well).  This doesn’t mean that no one liked the first batch – to the contrary, my husband’s co-workers couldn’t get enough of them.  They just weren’t like Hot Cross Buns, they were more like a thick, dense cookie bar.

On to the success story…  My second attempt worked out wonderfully.  The buns turned out fluffy, light and delicious.  How did this happen (you might ask)?  There are three reasons:

  1. I’ve changed how I get my breads to rise.  I still put the dough in the oven but I don’t warm it by turning it on, I just add a pot of boiling water to warm the oven and turn the light on to ensure the temperature stays warm enough.
  2. I changed the amount of the chocolate chips and the timing of when to add them to the dough.
  3. Instead of using milk, I used buttermilk.

The chocolate party is a linky party hosted by Roxana’s Home Baking and has a different theme every month.  As it turns out, the #chocolateparty theme for April pairs buttermilk and chocolate which is great considering the modifications I made to this recipe.  The only thing I would change the next time I make this recipe is to use milk chocolate chips with a rough chop (just because they’re larger than the semi-sweet chips).  I like the flavor of milk chocolate better in some recipes.  Would you keep the semi-sweet chips or change to  milk chocolate?

chocolate party logoEnjoy!

Buttermilk Chocolate Chip Hot Cross Buns

Yield:  15 or 16 Buns                  Cook Time:  20 minutes


  • 2 tablespoons instant yeast
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups buttermilk, warmed to 110 degrees
  • 1 large eggs at room temperature, lightly beaten
  • 4 1/2 cups flour plus more for dusting
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3 1/2 tablespoons unsalted melted butter plus additional for greasing the bowl and baking pan (or you can use cooking spray instead of additional butter)
  • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips (or substitute milk chocolate chips chopped in half or quarters)


  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons hot water


  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons milk or water


Step 1:  Warm milk in the microwave to 110 degrees.  One minute and 25 seconds works in my glass 2 cup measure.  I used my candy thermometer to check the temperature.  If you are transferring to a small bowl, warm the bowl so the milk doesn’t cool.  Add the sugar and yeast to the milk and stir to combine.  Set aside for about 10 to 15 minutes.  I used the boiling water in the oven method for this step too.  The mixture should grow and become foamy.

Step 2:  In a large mixing bowl of your electric mixer, stir together flour and salt.  In the center of the flour form a well.  Add the butter, egg and yeast into the well.  Mix the ingredients and slowly incorporate more and more flour until the flour is completely incorporated and a dough is formed.  Using a dough hook on your electric mixer, knead the dough for approximately five minutes.  The dough should now be smooth and elastic.  If necessary, you may add a little more flour.

Step 3:  Prepare a large bowl by greasing it with butter or cooking spray.  Transfer the dough into the bowl and turn it so the entire dough becomes greased.  Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let it rise for an hour (I used the boiling water in the oven method here too).   After an hour, the dough should have doubled in size.

Step 4:  On a clean work surface, lightly sprinkle some flour.  Place the dough on the floured surface.  Deflate the dough.  Add the chocolate chips.  Incorporate the chips by kneading the dough.  Using a bench scraper or a sharp knife cut the dough into 15 or 16 evenly sized dough balls.  If you’re using a 9 by 13 inch pan, you may want make 3 by 5 rows of buns or your pan may fit 4 by 4 rows of buns.  Let this determine whether you should make 15 or 16 buns, otherwise you could wind up with a few oddly shaped buns.  Place the buns in a greased or parchment lined baking pan.  The buns should be set closely together in the pan.  Cover the buns and let them rise for 20 minutes (since I have a double oven, I used the boiling water in the oven method here too).

Step 5:  In a 400 degree preheated oven, bake the buns for 20 to 25 minutes.  The buns will be golden brown and smell delicious.

Step 6:  Glaze:  While the buns are baking, combine the sugar and 2 tablespoons of hot water in a small bowl.  Mix until the sugar dissolves.  If necessary, additional hot water in small increments but do not exceed a total of 3 tablespoons (i.e. the original 2 tablespoons plus up to an additional 1 tablespoon).

Step 7:  After the buns are finished baking, take them out of the oven.  Using a pastry brush, coat the buns with all the glaze immediately after removing them from the oven.  Move the buns to a wire rack and let them cool in the pan.

Step 8:  Crosses:  In a medium bowl, mix powdered sugar and 1 tablespoon of milk (or water) to create the icing mixture.  You may add up to 1 additional tablespoon of milk to get to the a piping consistency.  Fill a piping bag with the icing and pipe crosses on the buns.  Alternatively you can fill the corner of a plastic ziploc bag, and snip 1/4 inch opening in end to pipe the crosses.  Many like these buns served warm but I thought they were delicious at room temperature.

Storing:  Store buns in a sealed plastic container or covered with plastic wrap for a few days.

Tips:  If your house is chilly like mine always is and your dough doesn’t rise, you can boil a pot of water while preparing the dough and place the water and dough in a cold oven.  The boiling water will create a warm moist environment in the oven for the dough to rise well.


Recipe from Seeded At The Table, originally from Butter Baking.

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Creamy Tomato Sauce

Creamy Tomato Sauce by Bakewell Junction

Creamy Tomato Sauce by Bakewell Junction

Whew.  It’s been a busy few weeks.  We had a huge deadline at work and with the Easter holiday, it’s been a whirlwind.  I had family over for Palm Sunday and we had a few favorites.  One of them is this Creamy Tomato Sauce over ravioli.  Now, the ravioli I like to use is store bought and frozen (I know, don’t judge) but the highlight is this sauce.  It is delicious.  I bet you’ll have a difficult time trying to stop yourself from licking the plate after the ravioli are gone.  Just be sure to have a few loaves of crusty Italian bread to mop up any remaining sauce on the plate.


Creamy Tomato Sauce

Yield:  4 – 6 servings                Cook Time:  45 minutes


  • 1 28 ounce can of your favorite crushed tomatoes
  • 1 cup heavy cream (I use heavy whipping cream)
  • 2 tablespoons shredded fresh basil or 3 teaspoons dried basil
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano or marjoram, optional (I omit this)
  • Salt and black pepper to taste (I omit the pepper)


Step 1:  Combine tomatoes, oregano, basil, garlic, salt and black pepper in a large sauce pan or a stock pot.  Cook on low and bring the tomato mixture to a simmer.  Simmer 30 minutes.

Step 2:  Add cream and stir until combined.  Meanwhile begin cooking a pound of your favorite pasta according to the package directions in a different pot. Back to the sauce – simmer until thickened while stirring occasionally.  You will see the mixture thickening after 10 to 15 minutes.

Step 3:  Server immediately over your favorite pasta.

Tips:  This recipe is best the first day.  It’s good as leftovers too but it won’t be as creamy and will begin becoming more like a regular pasta sauce.


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