Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Not Your Mama's Pumpkin Bread

I have tried quite a few pumpkin bread recipes, always ending up with a similar good, but not remarkable product. Don't get me wrong, I love pumpkin in just about anything, and those sweet, cake-y breads are certainly yummy. But what I really want is a pumpkin bread that is tasty AND nutritious. The following recipe I adapted from this one, which was adapted from this one.

Now for the Beth version...

Spiced Pumpkin Bread

2 c. flour
2 c. brown sugar, lightly packed
3/4 tsp. salt
2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. nutmeg
1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. ginger
1 c. wheat bran

1 c. raw, hull-less pumpkin seeds

2 c. pumpkin puree (instructions follow)
1 c. oil
2 whole eggs
3 egg whites
1/2 c. milk
1 tsp. vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350. Grease two loaf pans.

Using a whisk, combine all dry ingredients, then stir in 2/3 cup of the pumpkin seeds.

In separate bowl, combine all liquid ingredients.

Gently stir wet and dry ingredients together, just until combined.

Pour into loaf pans. Sprinkle batter with the remaining pumpkin seeds.

Bake for 60 minutes, or until a skewer inserted in the center of each loaf comes out clean. Remove from oven. Let sit for 10 minutes, then turn out of pans onto a cooling rack or cutting board.

Cut a slice, spread it with butter, and eat it piping hot! Oh me, oh my... YUM!

Now, for the puree... I don't use store-bought pumpkin puree anymore, not since I discovered how easy and CHEAP it is to make it up myself. And have you heard that there will be a shortage of canned pumpkin this year? I have been told to stock up now, because there is a good chance that come holiday season, there will be none left on the grocery store shelves.

Choose a nice, ripe pie pumpkin from your local farmers market, grocery store, or garden. Cut the stem end out, then cut entire pumpkin in half.

Remove guts, saving the seeds to roast for another tasty snack (clean, toss with seasonings and roast at 250 until browned, stirring every 15 minutes to keep from burning and sticking).

If your pumpkin is reasonably sized, simply place the gutted pumpkin halves on a baking sheet and roast at 350 for about an hour, or until all of the flesh is tender. If you have a huge pumpkin, such as some of mine, you may need to quarter it and roast it in batches.

Let your roasted pumpkin cool a tad, so that it can be handled without scalding your fingers. Scoop the softened flesh out into a blender and puree until smooth (careful, if the flesh is still hot, it will spew out of even the most tightly sealed compartments once those blades start going... I like to put a thick kitchen towel over the top of my blender and hold it in place around the outside with my hands), adding water if it is too thick and not mixing well.

Divide the puree into freezer containers or ziplock bags. Seal, label, and store for use throughout the winter. I had hoped to can my puree this year, but discovered that it is not adviseable for pumpkin to be home-canned due to its low acidity, and high possibility of growing icky bacterias that will make you very, very sick.

I hope you'll let me know if you try this recipe out. I want to know what you think!


doughtydigest said...

I think I'll have to try it, it sounds great! Have you ever used applesauce instead of the oil? I do that in carrot cake, about half applesauce and half oil, it is so yummy and even more healthy.

heather said...

That looks beautiful!