So the ones that make it onto my blog are good: You have my word. If our tastes differ, that’s one thing, but the product itself will be good quality and/or good value, or I’ll tell you otherwise.
I know the owner, Jaye Norris (no relation, but much confusion to a mutual food person, Byron Russell of Cheney Brothers). Jaye knows I bake, and so she wanted honest opinions about the brunch breads that she’s marketing and selling locally.
First, the packaging. It’s lovely — and says, “I chose this for you.” Perfect for a Thanksgiving hostess gift.
But more importantly, the breads deliver on texture and flavor — both crucial to a bread like this. They are so moist, yet each is cooked to deliver a nice “crumb” when you cut into it.
I like the Cranberry Pumpkin — sweet, spicy and tart all in one. (Maybe too tart for those who don’t like cranberries.) I would have liked nuts in it, but nuts are so subjective these days — so many people can’t eat them, I understand why she omitted them.
She did use them in the zucchini -cherry nut bread.
Zucchini has long been one of my favorite quick breads – it has the moistness that the squash brings to the spiced loaf, and gets a bite of sweetness with the cherries, then the natural crunch of the nuts. A winner!
The lemon blueberry with crumb topping was also delicious. A tad sweet, I thought – but once I poured some coffee to try it with, I changed my mind. Big blooming blueberries that explode in the muffin as it is baked, and a hint (could use a tad more) of lemon flavor, too, give it a nice balance. The crumb topping gives it some texture.
None of them had the off-flavor that indicates cheap oils, margarines or last year’s nuts. They tasted of good quality ingredients, and were fresh, moist and like they were right out of the oven. (They actually were three days old when I got them.)
Muffins an option
I’m part of a two-person household, and we don’t need any sweets laying around with all the cupcakes I’m baking. So I explained that these loaves were way too huge for two. She suggested the muffins. They’re the same flavors, and also very good looking, and a generous size (I halved one to share with MealMusic Man, who said that was plenty for us).