Strawberry Cream Cheese Bread
4 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs, beaten
½ cup buttermilk
⅓ cup vegetable oil, plus 1 Tablespoon and 1 teaspoon
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour (sifted and then measured)
2 teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon cinnamon
3 Tablespoons dry strawberry Jello
2 cups fresh strawberries, chopped in small pieces, sprinkled with 2 tablespoons of granulated sugar, gently mashed so the juices are released. Toss berries with 1 Tablespoon of flour. Reserve 1 tablespoon of juice from strawberries to add to batter.
1 Tablespoon of strawberry juice
4 ounces cream cheese, soften
2 cups confectioners’ sugar
¼ teaspoon vanilla extract
3 Tablespoons heavy cream or whole milk
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour a 9×5 loaf pan. In a large mixing bowl, using an electric mixer, beat cream cheese until smooth and creamy. Add 1 cup of sugar and beat until light and fluffy. Add beaten eggs and mix well.
Using a wire whisk slowly add buttermilk, oil and vanilla. In a medium size mixing bowl, sift flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon and dry jello mix.
Add mixed dry ingredients to the cream cheese mixture or (wet ingredients). Mix with a wooden spoon or a wire whisk. (NOTE: Don’t over mix. Over mixing will result in a tough textured bread. Gently fold in the strawberries (reserving about 2 Tablespoons to sprinkle on top of batter before baking. Add 1 Tablespoon of the strawberry juice to the batter.
Reduce the oven to 325 degrees and bake loaf for 40 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Allow bread to cool completely in the pan on a wire rack before glazing and slicing.
Make the glaze: Using an electric mixer, beat cream cheese until smooth. Add confectioners’ sugar, vanilla and heavy cream. Mix until smooth and creamy. Drizzle over bread immediately after bread has cooled. Garnish with chopped fresh strawberries, if desired. Bread will stay fresh for 7 days stored in an airtight container.
Do ahead freeze tip:
Bread can be made up a day or two ahead of serving. Actually it taste better on the second day! It will freeze up to 2 months. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight.
Strawberry Cream Cheese Muffins: Preheat the oven to 425 degrees and spray a 12-count muffin pan with nonstick spray or line with cupcake liners. Prepare batter as directed above, fill each cupcake liner to the top with batter and bake for 5 minutes at 425 degrees. Reduce the heat to 350 and continue baking for an additional 10 to 15 minutes longer or until a toothpick comes out clean. Top with cream cheese glaze. Makes about 12 muffins.