Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Sweet Potato-Pecan Tea Bread

Two things happened around the same time. 1) Donna's blog showed this gorgeous loaf of tea bread she had made with a wonderful decorative loaf pan from Williams-Sonoma. 2) My parents sent me home with some sweet potatoes fresh from their garden.

I wanted a pan like the one she used, but when I saw this old ceramic Crate and Barrel loaf pan for $5 at an antique mall, I decided it would suit me just fine!

It's got an interesting tapered shape, and I figured if it didn't release the cake very well, at least I didn't pay too much for the pan.

I am happy to report that I had success with my very first loaf, although I can't say my tea bread is quite as pretty as Donna's tea bread! But happily, I learned that mashed sweet potatoes make a fine substitute for pumpkin. This recipe from Crate & Barrel was actually tucked into the bottom of the loaf pan when I got it, but I made a few substitutions, such as omitting the raisins it called for. The DH and I both enjoyed this recipe, which makes two loaves of tea bread. If you don't have a decorative loaf pan, just use two regular size pans (about 9 x 5 x 3 inches).

Sweet Potato-Pecan Tea Bread

2-1/2 cups whole-wheat flour
1/2 cup cornmeal
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1-1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup butter, at room temperature
2 cups sugar
2 cups cooked sweet potatoes (mashed or whirled through a food processor)
4 eggs
2/3 cup water
2/3 cup chopped pecans

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare loaf pan with cooking spray.

In a mixing bowl, combine flour, cornmeal, soda, ginger, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg and salt.

In a separate mixing bowl, combine butter and sugar and mix well. Beat in sweet potatoes, eggs and water. Add the dry ingredients and combine just until blended. Fold in the pecans. Pour into prepared pan and bake for 55-65 minutes or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool in pan on wire rack for 10 minutes, then turn out onto rack and allow to cool completely. (Or sneak a nice hot slice, as I did!)


  1. Great find on the lovely pan. And the recipes sounds delicious; the cake looks delicious. Love sweet potatoes.

  2. Cute pan. And the cake looks yummy as well!

  3. Hummm... a new recipe to try! Your loaf of sweet potato-pecan tea bread looks delicious! Nice baking pan too.

  4. Love the pan. It would make a beautiful steamed pudding too. Yummm! I do love all the Autumn recipes.

  5. Hi Angela
    Donna's pan was certainly more presentation friendly but I'm sure yours tastes just as good. It would be nice to interchange this with pumpkin or the sweet potatoes, depending on what's at hand.
    I should confess, I always cut the end off loaves while warm, how else do you know if the recipe is good?

  6. Looks delicious, and what a pretty pan!

  7. Looks delicious! Too bad the pattern of the pan doesn't show too well but the cake did get that nice, scalloped shape. Enjoy!

  8. This recipe sounds delicious! Love the pan too, Joanie


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