3/4 cup medium-dice Irish cheddar cheese, such as Dubliner (about 3 ounces)
3/4 cup grated Irish cheddar cheese, such as Dubliner (about 1 1/2 ounces), grated on the large holes of a box grater
3 large eggs
2/3 cup whole milk
4 tablespoons unsalted butter (1/2 stick), melted, plus more for coating the pan
1 1/2 cups grated Granny Smith apples (about 2 medium), grated on the large holes of a box grater
Makes:1 (9-inch) loaf
This easy quick bread recipe was inspired by my childhood snack of cheese and apples. It bakes up with lots of cheesy pockets, moist apples, and a little bit of sage to round out the flavors. Serve a slice with a bowl of Celery Root Soup or toasted with butter as part of a weekend brunch.
Special equipment: You will need a metal 9-by-5-inch loaf pan for this recipe. Loaf pans can be purchased at most cooking supply stores and at many large grocery stores.
What to buy: Irish cheddar, often labeled Kerrygold or Dubliner, is an aged cow’s milk cheese that has the sharpness of cheddar combined with the hard, crumbly texture of Parmesan. You can find it in the dairy section of most well-stocked grocery stores or online.
Game plan: You can also use this recipe to bake savory muffins instead of bread—just use a standard 12-well muffin pan. Coat the wells with butter and bake the muffins at 350°F until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, about 20 to 25 minutes. Let the muffins cool for 10 minutes, then remove them from the pan and finish cooling on a wire rack.
1Heat the oven to 350°F and arrange a rack in the middle. Generously coat a metal 9-by-5-inch loaf pan with butter.
2Whisk the flour, baking powder, salt, and sage together in a large bowl until aerated and any large lumps are broken up. Add the diced and shredded cheese and toss until the pieces are separated and evenly coated with the flour mixture; set aside.
3Place the eggs, milk, and melted butter in a medium bowl and whisk until smooth. Add the apples and stir until combined. Add the egg mixture to the flour-cheese mixture and stir until the flour is just incorporated, being careful not to overmix (a few streaks of flour are OK). The batter will be very thick.
4Using a rubber spatula, scrape the batter into the prepared pan, pushing it into the corners and smoothing the top. Bake until the bread is golden brown all over and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean (test several spots because you may hit a pocket of cheese), about 45 to 50 minutes.
5Place the pan on a wire rack to cool for 15 minutes. Run a knife around the perimeter of the bread and turn it out onto the rack. Let it cool for at least 30 minutes more before slicing.