A few years ago my friend Melissa gave me the Sweet Melissa Baking Book as a gift.  I never made anything from it for no other reason other than sheer laziness., blogs, magazines, etc. were all easier resources for me to use when searching for recipes, though I did often see references to the cookbook (or baking book as it were) in the blog-osphere.  I did come across the Sweet Melissa Sundays group and thought this would be a good way to try a bunch of difference recipes from this revered baking book and an excuse to have baked goods at least once a week!

Oranges and Cinnamon

Mermaid Sweets
chose this week’s recipe – Sweet Potato Bread with Cinnamon-Orange-Rum Glaze – and I will admit, this is not one of the recipes that jumped out at me when I first perused this book.  I never would have tried this recipe were it not for the SMS group and I thank you for it!  This bread cake (who are we kidding calling it a bread?!?) is so unbelievably moist and the cinnamon-rum-orange glaze gives it a nice flavor and helps seal all that moisture in.

This is what you will need:

Ingredients for Sweet Potato Bread

I had never purchased/had a use for/thought about using canned sweet potatoes prior to this recipe.  They smelled like baby food and looked a little strange and pathetic in the can.  I think canned pumpkin or pureed butternut squash would substitute nicely for the sweet potatoes.  (If you’re anything like me and freaked out when Libby’s said there was a pumpkin shortage this past Thanksgiving,  you have TONS of canned pumpkin lying around.)    I like to make recipes as-is the first time around before deciding on substitutions or alterations so I stuck with the canned sweet potatoes.  Nuts are an exception to this rule.  I love nuts but my husband and step-daughter do not, so I find myself leaving them out of most recipes.  It’s a shame, too, because the recommended pecans would work very well in this bread cake.  I also think topping it with a more marshmallowy frosting would work well around Thanksgiving as a twist on the classic sweet potato dish we’ve all had.

Just out of the oven

Visit the Mermaid Sweets blog for the recipe or go out and buy the book!  There are some really great recipes in there and I’m looking forward to trying out a lot of them over the next several months.