If I ask my dad about a plant or flower that I’ve seen in the Santa Monica mountains, he’s either very proud to tell me that it’s a native or almost annoyed to tell me it’s not. I think it’s funny. It’s almost like he’s defending the mountains . . . “You know, that’s not from here, it shouldn’t be here,” he’ll say, as if the mountains don’t enjoy these foreign visitors.
He was very excited when I asked about Toyon (sometimes called Christmas Holly). He proudly told me it grows all over the Santa Monica mountains and it’s native! Of course, he threw in a little botanical trivia — this is the plant (shrub, rather) from which the name “Hollywood” comes. Cool!
I thought it was the obvious choice for today’s Friday Flowers! And it looks so pretty with this delicious Spiced Almond-Apple Persimmon Bread! (But please, don’t eat the shrub!)
What a delightful Christmas breakfast treat! Pour your favorite cup of coffee and warm the bread up. And open a few presents from Santa while you’re at it!
1-1/2 hours ahead: Make the batter and topping.
At least 1 hour ahead: Bake the bread.
You can make this bread up to 4 days ahead of time if you wrap it tightly and keep it stored in the refrigerator. Heat it in the oven before serving. You can also store it, wrapped tightly in the freezer, for up to 2 weeks. Again, warm it in the oven before serving.