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Literary Friday: Vintage Mary Engelbreit *plus* a Recipe

Friday, November 10, 2017

Happy Literary Friday, My Lovelies!  We've only had one brief cool spell so far this fall, but this weekend promises a few cool days which makes me happy.  It's been unseasonably warm for most of the season!

Last week was Homecoming at Shelley's college, and I remember that Mary Engelbreit's Autumn has a little chapter on Homecoming.  I took it out and re-read it.  Published in 1996, I was surprised that I still love this little book, and all the fun projects and decorating ideas are classic.

The book begins with a Back to School chapter, followed by Halloween, Homecoming, Leaf Peepers, and ends with a chapter on Thanksgiving.

I tried the Apple Bread recipe from the Leaf Peepers chapter: I had everything in my kitchen to bake it, and I bet you do, too.

Apple Bread Recipe


3/4 cup vegetable oil
1 cup brown sugar
2 eggs
1 1/2 cup chopped, unpeeled apple
1/4 cup chopped walnuts (optional)
1 T grated lemon zest
1 1/2 cup flour
1 t cinnamon
1/2 t nutmeg
1 t baking soda
1/4 t salt


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Beat oil with sugar and eggs.  Stir in the apples and lemon zest ( and walnuts, if desired).

Sift together flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, baking soda, and salt.  Add to apple mixture.  Do not over mix.

Pour into a 9" X 5" loaf pan.  Bake for 55 - 60 minutes.

Cook's note:  I substituted 1 1/2 t Penzey's Cake Spice mix for spices.  Also, check after 45 - 50 minutes because mine cooked more quickly than 55 minutes (just to be on the safe side).

I had mine for lunch on Monday with a cappuccino.  

Autumn is part of a series of all four seasons.  Although out of print, it's still available on Amazon via several used book and/or vintage/rare book sources.  

I love Mary Engelbreit's illustrations.  She is so talented!  Did you ever read Mary Engelbreit's Home Companion Magazine?  I miss it so much!  It was one of my favorites.

This year marks Mary's 40th anniversary as a licensed illustrator.  Congratulations, Mary!

Until next time...

Happy reading!
Ricki Jill


  1. I’ve got to try this recipe! Looks delicious!

  2. I still love Mary Englebreit! Sometimes when I have a little extra time I stalk her on the internet. She does post on her Facebook page some. It's fun to see what she's up to and that she's still as successful as ever. Her calendars are my favorites!

  3. Looks delish! I have her Christmas book and will pull it out in a few weeks! Use to love her mags, too!

  4. This looks and sounds delicious! Might have to make this one soon.

  5. Ricki Jill, the apple bread looks inviting. Wish I had a slice with my evening tea. I'm a long time fan of Mary Englebreit and have some of her books. I fondly remember Home Companion and still have my copies.

  6. Mary Engelbreit has always been one of my favorites. I have a file of prints and paperdolls I tore from the magazine and saved some of her holiday magazines, which I just realized I should now be getting out. I have some of her books, too and this is one. She and Susan Branch are two of my favorite cozy artists. Everything they do is filled with love and warmth and charm. The bread looks great!

  7. I love Mary Engelbreit! I still use her calendars and I used her line of The Queen of Everything for my 50th birthday party. Still love all of her illustrations and I am still the queen of everything :-)

  8. I loved the ME magazine. I couldn't wait to sit and relax with it-always something to look forward to doing.

    Your cake looks awesome. I love pie making but this is fast! What type of apple did you use?


  9. Mary E is a long time favorite and inspiration! I do have some of her books {I must dust them off!} but am not familiar with this seasonal series, it looks delightful! So does your apple bread~

  10. This is the perfect fall recipe! I just love baking breads this time of year and your apple bread looks so comforting.

  11. ooh, how cute is that pennant rug!?
    It's been really hot here too..once it cools down, I'd love to make that apple bread...did you use red or granny smith?
    I love Mary Engelbreit, her artwork always reminds me of the holidays.


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Hello, Lovelies!

I'm Ricki Jill. Welcome! I'm honored that you're reading my blog. I enjoy sharing my creative lifestyle @ The Bookish Dilettante. For more information about my blog, please read the Start Here page. Thank-you for stopping by, and I hope you'll consider following me via email.


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