Italian Bread

PANE ALLE PRUGNE (Italian Plum Bread)

This is a wonderful quick bread to serve anytime, and also makes a lovely “sweet” to have at an afternoon tea.

Dust the top with confectioners’ sugar, and serve with tea or coffee.

If possible, try to buy the Italian purple prune plums; they are perfect for making this delightful dessert.





Makes two (9 x 5-inch) loaves



  • 1 cup (2 sticks/8 oz/226g) butter or margarine, softened
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 4 eggs
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour PLUS 2 extra tablespoons, for tossing with chopped plums
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. cream of tartar
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 3/4 cup plain, lemon or orange flavored yogurt
  • 2 tsp. grated lemon or orange zest
  • 2 cups (about 3 – 4 medium to large size), diced Italian prune plums (chopped into 1/2-inch pieces)
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts (optional)
  • 2 tbsp. Grand Marnier liqueur or other orange flavored liqueur (optional)
  • Confectioners’ sugar, for dusting tops of loaves (optional)




1). Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (180 degrees C).

With cooking spray, lightly spray two 9 x 5 x 2 1/2-inch loaf pans; line bottoms of pans with parchment paper.

Lightly spray parchment paper also.

2). Wash and dry the plums; chop into 1/2-inch pieces.

Place in a medium size bowl, and sprinkle the 2 extra tablespoons of flour over them.

Toss together to coat. Set aside.

3). In a large bowl, cream butter, sugar and vanilla until fluffy.

Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.

4). Sift together flour, salt, cream of tartar and baking soda.

5). Blend yogurt and orange zest (or lemon zest, if using); add to creamed mixture alternately with dry ingredients. Stir until well-blended.

Add diced plums and nuts; mix well, add orange liqueur (optional).

6). Divide batter between the 2 prepared loaf pans and bake at 350 degrees F (180 degrees C) for 50 to 55 minutes or until cake tester inserted in center of bread comes out clean.

7). Remove loaves from oven; let cool in pans for 10 – 15 minutes, then invert loaves onto cooling rack, and let cool completely.

When ready to serve, dust tops of loaves with confectioners’ sugar, if desired.






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