Isn’t homemade bread just the best! This tasty, super quick toasting bread is exquisitely flavored with buttermilk and a surprise swirl of orange marmalade inside. Fresh bread in about an hour, and perfect for toasting, with a big slather of butter
Before winter moves too far into the rearview mirror, I’ve been taking moments to celebrate citrus. It’s both a gift and a curse that, in our U.S. hemisphere, citrus is a winter crop. A curse in that, in the summer, when fresh salads and snappy vegetables beg for a puckery hit of lemon or lime (also: margaritas!), said fruits are sometimes nowhere to be found (or found at eye-popping prices).
But they’re also an amazing winter gift. As much as I love and adore root vegetables (srsly – a sweet potato is baking in my Instant Pot as I type this), and as much as I love the soups and stews that these winter veggies make thick and tummy-warming, it doesn’t take long before I’m subconsciously glancing around the plate for the thing that’s missing: The bright and perky flavors of summer, because those are my favorite. The cravings for them arrive in December and percolate all winter long.
When February rolls in, white and frigid, and just when I think I can’t possibly look another parsnip in the face, the pyramids of oranges appear at the grocery store, and my foodie heart spontaneously bursts with joy. Blood oranges, Cara Caras, tangelos, uglis (a cross between a grapefruit and a mandarin), Sumo mandarins, and new-to-me this year, Gold Nuggets — mini Sumos that peel like clementines and have 10x the flavor.
Citrus is my winter sanity-saver.
I should’ve shared this recipe long ago, as I developed it back when I was gripped by a marmalade-making obsession, and a fresh batch of Blood Orange Marmalade was looking for purpose. When I’m craving homemade bread, but not in the mood for the standard beer bread quick bread, this is the recipe I’ve turned to, over and over again.
What’s special about this recipe is that the marmalade is baked right into the bread in discrete layers that you don’t even notice until you take a bite. Just enough sweet orange pucker to make you extra glad for homemade bread and the wonders of winter fruit.
But, don’t feel like you have to make your own marmalade to enjoy this toasting bread, lol. Or, for that matter, that you use orange marmalade at all (I’ve made it many times with apricot and meyer lemon-ginger). The fruit is not meant to overwhelm the bread, but rather surprise the taste buds with a hint of citrus zing amongst the rich buttermilk bites of bread.
This is a quick bread, so, the batter comes together lickety-split in a bowl. Spread in a loaf pan. Bake, slice, and it’s ready to eat. But I highly recommend serving it as toast, because the gently crusty surface provides the structure that lets pats of butter melt deep into the crumb and mingle with the marmalade.
This is the perfect brunch bread (Easter, even?), or an afternoon snack when you can’t decide between something sweet or savory or toasty. Orange Marmalade Toasting Bread is all those things, and more.
Eat some oranges. Make some bread. Smile at will.
Orange Marmalade Toasting Bread
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup white whole wheat
- 1/2 cup white sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
- zest from 2 large oranges
- 1/4 cup finely chopped crystallized ginger
- pinch of fresh nutmeg few grates on a microplaner
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 1 large egg
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 2 heaping tablespoons well-stirred orange marmalade heat just a bit if too thick
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease or spray a standard 9"x5" loaf pan with nonstick cooking spray. (For ease of loaf removal, line the sprayed pan with a strip of parchment cut to fit the longest side, with extra length hanging over the edges to use as a handle).
- Whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, zest, and nutmeg in a medium mixing bowl.
- In a medium mixing bowl, whisk the olive oil, buttermilk, vanilla and the egg until smooth and creamy.
- Measure the marmalade into a small mixing bowl. Add one teaspoon of very hot tap water and whisk until the marmalade is loose but still jelly. Set aside.
- Pour the olive oil mixture over the dry ingredients. Gently stir and fold the ingredients until all the flour has just been incorporated and a shaggy, wet batter is formed. Be careful not to over-mix.
- Scrape about 1/3 of the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the batter level. Spoon one tablespoon of marmalade in a line down the center of the batter. Use a small offset spatula to spread the marmalade over the batter, leaving a half inch margin around the edge of the loaf. (Don't worry about being too neat.)
- Spread another 1/3 of the batter into the pan, and repeat with the remaining tablespoon of marmalade.
- Finally, top with the remaining batter and level.
- Bake for 45-50 minutes. When finished, the loaf should be domed and golden and wonderfully cracked, and a toothpick inserted into the center should come out clean. Let the loaf cool in the pan for 15 minutes before removing and slicing.