Orange Cranberry Quick-Bread

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Whew. Hello friends.

I am FINALLY done with student teaching! I cannot believe it has been 16 weeks, what a wild and wonderful ride. Throughout the good and difficult days, I have experienced so much and grown exponentially as an educator. I EVEN SOUND SO MUCH MORE MATURE, RIGHT? I have learned countless lessons from both my colleagues and the students. Here are a few of the most important things I have learned:

  1. Don’t ask a question that you don’t want answered. When you whisper yell (way scarier than real yelling) “WHAT DO YOU THINK YOU ARE DOING RIGHT NOW?” to the child standing on his desk pretending to be a baby, he will most likely respond. Children do not make the distinction between actual and rhetorical questions. Trust me, this is important to know.
  2. If a child tells you that it is an emergency and they must go to the bathroom RIGHT THIS SECOND, do not test them. Especially if they are five. Please please please do not make the assumption they can wait until the end of your lesson, because they simply cannot. You will not like the outcome.
  3. YOU NEED A MINIATURE LAMINATOR IF YOU ARE PLANNING TO BE A TEACHER. At the end of my first placement, the other kindergarten teachers gave me a miniature laminator as a goodbye gift (love you ladies!). I immediately cried (obviously). The invention of the personal laminator is the greatest thing that has happened during my lifetime. There are just so many things that can be laminated.
  4. It is essential that you think long and hard about any fashion choices you make for the school day. Think your outfit is appropriate? What about when you are laying spread eagle on the carpet during a lesson? How about when you are standing on your very tippy toes trying to reach an anchor chart? When you are crawling around on the floor trying to find a missing glue cap? See my point?

Obviously, I could continue this list for about 100,000 more words, but I’ll spare you.

Since I’ve been home the living has been sweet and lazy. I’ve worn the same cardigan for three days straight. I have caught up on all of my Real Housewives drama. I finished the entire first season of the podcast Limetown (GO CHECK IT OUT NOW). I also made this insanely easy and delicious Orange Cranberry Quick-Bread! Go me!

You will love this bread for it’s holiday flavors, beautiful coloring, and the fact it comes together so quickly. Did I mention that it’s topped with a yummy glaze?

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Cranberry Orange Quick-Bread (Adapted from Two Peas and Their Pod)

1 and 1/2 cups all purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 cup sugar

zest of 1 large orange

3/4 cup buttermilk

1/2 cup Canola oil

2 eggs (lightly beaten)

1 tablespoon orange juice

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 cup fresh cranberries

Preheat oven to 350 F. Prepare one large loaf pan or three mini loaf pans. I used three mini loaf pans that didn’t need to be greased.

In a large bowl, use a whisk or fork to mix together flour, salt, and baking powder. Set aside.

In a small bowl, mix together sugar and orange zest. (Zesting the orange was by far my favorite part of this entire recipe, so enjoy.) The mixture should be fragrant once combined! Save the orange. Combine the sugar mixture with the flour mixture. *I’ve included some information on zesting at the bottom of this post!

In another bowl (of medium size), mix together buttermilk, oil, eggs, and orange juice (use the same orange from which you got the zest). Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir until just combined. The batter will seem runny, that’s okay!

Finally, stir in cranberries carefully. Pour mixture into loaf pan(s). If you are making mini loaves, bake for 35 minutes, then check center with a toothpick. Remove from oven once toothpick can be removed cleanly.

Once the bread has been removed from the oven, you can make the glaze…

Orange Zest Glaze

1 cup powdered sugar

1 teaspoon orange zest

2 tablespoons fresh orange juice

Combine all ingredients. Drizzle over top the cooling bread. The more, the better. Trust me.

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How cute, right? These would be perfect holiday gifts all wrapped up! This is also a recipe that would be sure to impress any guests you may have in the upcoming weeks. Anything involving zest sounds fancy to me.

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xx

*If zesting confuses or scares you (as it does my sister, Tori), then I highly recommend checking out this super helpful link from the ever wonderful Real Simple :  http://www.realsimple.com/food-recipes/cooking-tips-techniques/preparation/zest-citrus

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