HAPPY BIRTHDAY Samuel L. Clemens (Mark Twain)
Samuel L. Clemens (Mark Twain) was born on November 30, 1835, in Florida, Missouri. He wrote under the pen name Mark Twain and went on to author several novels, including two major classics of American literature: "The Adventures of Tom Sawyer" and "Adventures of Huckleberry Finn." He was also a riverboat pilot, journalist, lecturer, entrepreneur and inventor. Twain died on April 21, 1910, in Redding, Connecticut.
Some interesting trivia...
Mark Twain favored white linen shirts and suits and smoked 20 cigars and countless pipes every day.
He first fell in love with his wife, Olivia, when her brother showed him a photograph while they were on ship together. Twain said: "I do believe that young filly has broken my heart. That only leaves me with one option, for her to mend it." On their first outing together, he and Olivia went to a reading by Charles Dickens. She turned down his marriage proposals three times before accepting. For the rest of their lives together, she edited his novels, essays, and lectures.
So lucky me I had enough to make 3 mini Eggnog Glazed Loaves with Cranberries. Buying these cute bags recently at a craft fair inspired my baking. I shared the treats with three special friends.
The recipe makes 3 mini loaves or 1 standard loaf size. It was easy to prepare. I really liked the flavor. The bread was moist and sliced easily. It makes a great holiday gift. Wrap in Christmas cellophane and tie with a ribbon or find a cute little bag. Be sure to attach the recipe to the gift. Recipe adapted from recipegirl.comBread Ingredients:
- 2- 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 tsp. baking powder
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1 tsp. Saigon cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg or ¼ tsp. dried nutmeg
- 2 large eggs
- 1 cup granulated white sugar
- 1 cup eggnog (low fat is fine)
- 1/2 cup salted butter, melted
- 1 tsp. vanilla
- 1/2 teaspoon rum extract or 1 tsp.dark rum, optional
- 1 cup fresh cranberries, halved
- 1 TB. sugar mixed with 1/2 tsp.cinnamon
- 1/2 cup powdered sugar
- 1/4 tsp. vanilla extract
- Dash freshly grated nutmeg or regular ground nutmeg
- 2 to 3 teaspoons eggnog
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease the bottom and 1/2 inch up the sides of a 9-by-5-by-3-inch loaf pan or 3 mini loaf pans.
- In a large bowl whisk together flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg. Make a well in the center of the flour mixture and set aside.
- In a medium bowl, combine the eggs, sugar, eggnog, melted butter, vanilla, and rum extract (if using). Beat well 3 minutes. Add egg mixture to the flour mixture and stir just until moistened (batter will be lumpy).
- Mix cranberries with cinnamon sugar mixture and gently stir into batter.
- Spoon batter into the prepared pan. Bake for about 30 minutes for mini loaf pans or 40 minutes for standard size loaf pan. Check for done-ness when a toothpick to the center comes out clean.
- Cool in the pan for 5 minutes, remove and cool completely on a rack.
- Prepare icing: Combine sugar, vanilla, and nutmeg. Stir in enough eggnog to reach drizzling consistency.
- Option: add toasted coconut on top of glaze for contrast.