Friday, October 24, 2014

Pumpkin Spice Bread

Cloves, nutmeg, cinnamon.

Those are the flavors of fall to me.  I know it's fall when I break those ingredients out for my baking attempts.  When this month's theme for What's Baking was announced as "baking with pumpkin or squash" I was excited.  While I love a good zucchini bread, my favorite way to enjoy squash is in soup or just roasted with brown sugar, maple syrup, etc.  I think I made it known when we last had the pumpkin theme two years ago that I was never a big fan of pumpkin flavored things.  I realized after making Pumpkin-Parmesean Biscuits that I actually enjoy pumpkin when it's baked in with other ingredients.  I think I mostly am turned off by the over pumpkin-ing of everything lately.  I mean, there are pumpkin Oreos, and, of course, the beloved "PSL" (when did that become a thing?  Why can't people just say "pumpkin spice latte"?  I have no idea and I have no desire to try it).

With the theme in mind, I flipped through a few of my cookbooks for inspiration and came across this recipe for Pumpkin Spice Bread in The Craft of Baking and set out to see if the pumpkin could, once again, win me over.

The end result is delicious.  It's easy to make (two bowls and a loaf pan, no mixers necessary) and there was no panic that it would be ruined after my son awoke from his nap earlier than planned.  In other news, the container of demerara sugar is a great toy that will provide enjoyment for as long as mommy needs to finish getting the batter ready.

Be sure to check out Carrie's Sweet Life for her upcoming round-up of all this month's submissions.

Pumpkin Spice Bread (from The Craft of Baking)

unsalted butter, at room temperature, for greasing the pan
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar
1 large egg
1 large egg yolk
1/2 cup grapeseed oil
3/4 cup canned pumpkin puree
1/3 cup plus 1 tbsp sour cream
3/4 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 cup plus 2 tbsp unbleached all-purpose flour
3/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
pinch of ground cloves
pinch of ground white pepper
1 tbsp demerara sugar

- Position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
- Line the bottom of an 8 1/2 x 4 1/2 in loaf pan with parchment paper, and grease the bottom and sides with butter.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the granulated sugar, brown sugar, egg, egg yolk, and oil.  Add the pumpkin, sour cream, and vanilla and whisk well to combine.
- In another bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, salt, nutmeg, cinnamon, cloves, and white pepper.
- Using a rubber spatula, fold the dry ingredients into the wet, then whisk together gently to just combine.
- Pour the batter into the prepared pan and sprinkle the top with the demerara sugar.
- Bake, rotating the pan once, until the bread is firm to the touch, well browned, and slightly cracked on top, about 55 minutes.
- Transfer the pan to a wire rack and let stand for 5 minutes.  Then turn out the loaf onto the rack t cool.
- Serve warm or at room temperature.

*The bread will keep in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days.

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