I’m thinking lemons…

I can see the bottom of the last box of lemons from this year’s crop.  I’ve made lemon meringue pies (far too many I’m told), lemon cookies, a few different lemon sauces, lemon cupcakes, two liters of limoncello, lemon puddings, candied lemon peel, 4 1/2 pounds of frozen lemon juice. I’m lemoned out. Almost.my own lemons

New to the southwest, I’ve been watching for local cookbooks. These range from  very expensive, coffee table books, better for viewing than cooking, all the day down to cookbooks put out by the local “ladies auxiliary”, or similar group, usually featuring at least a half dozen jello salad recipes.

One of my favorites is the first one I found; ” Tastes & Treasures A Storytelling Cookbook of Historic Arizona” published by The Historical League, LLC.  It tells the story of the founding and growth of the State of Arizona, wrapping it around the establishment of businesses, industries, hotels and restaurants, many of which have come and gone, a few of which have lived to become synonymous with Arizona itself.

From the famous Rancho De La Osa, which dates back to 1812, comes this incredible breakfast goodie.

Very Lemon Bread
Makes 1 loaf

For the bread:
1 1/2C sifted all-purpose flour
1t salt
1t baking powder
1C sugar
1/3C butter, melted
1 1/2T lemon extract
2 eggs
1/2C milk
1T grated lemon zest
1/2C pecans, chopped

For the Glaze:
1/4C fresh lemon juice
1/2C confectioners’  sugar

Preheat the oven to 350F. Sift the flour, salt and baking powder into a bowl. Mix the sugar, butter and lemon extract into a large bowl. Beat in the eggs. Add the flour mixture and milk alternately, beating until just blended after each addition. Fold in the lemon zest and pecans. Pour into a greased and floured 5×8″ loaf pan. Bake for 45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool in the pan on a wire rack for about 10 minutes.

While cooling, make the glaze. Blend the lemon juice and confectioners’ sugar in a bowl until smooth. Drizzle over the cracks in the top of the warm bread that forms while baking. Let set before serving.

Try not to eat it all in one sitting.

Lemon pic courtesy of: me.

Kent McDonald is a Certified Personal Chef, living and working in Phoenix, AZ. (c) All Rights Reserved, 2009

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