Everyone has one. You know, that can of pumpkin in the back of the pantry that you’ve been meaning to do something with. Well, with that crisp chill in the air (finally!) and fall in full swing, now is the time — no need to wait for Thanksgiving and pumpkin pie.
If I may make a suggestion, pumpkin bread is the perfect use for that lonely can… and have I got the perfect recipe for you!
This pumpkin bread is moist, nicely spiced, sweet but not overly so and, most importantly, easy-peasy. It’s also versatile — you can make it plain, or add nuts or chocolate chips, or amp up the spice, or tone it down a notch. It all works, and it’s all delicious. Enjoy!
Spiced Pumpkin Bread
Makes 2 loaves; adapted from this recipe from epicurious.com
2 1/2 cups sugar
1 cup vegetable oil
1 15-oz can pumpkin puree
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 Tbsp molasses (optional)
3 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp ground cloves1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp nutmeg
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
Preheat the oven to 350°. Grease and flour two loaf pans.
In the bowl of a stand mixer (or by hand), beat together the sugar and oil. Add the pumpkin, eggs, vanilla and molasses (if using) and beat to combine.
In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, cloves, cinnamon, nutmeg, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Add the flour mixture in two portions to the pumpkin mixture, beating until just combined. If you’d like to add nuts or chocolate chips, stir them in now.
Divide the batter between the two prepared loaf pans. Bake for about 1 hour, or until a tester inserted in the center comes out clean.
Cool slightly, then run a sharp knife around the edges of each loaf and turn out onto a rack to cool completely.
[author] [author_image timthumb=’on’]http://www.livemom.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/10/lauren.jpg[/author_image] [author_info] Lauren Walz is a freelance writer and editor and mama to a two-year-old girl. While she’s quick to brag about being a fifth-generation Texan, Lauren moved to Northern California in 2004 after graduating from UT Law and lived in the Silicon Valley area until last spring, when she and her family were drawn back to Austin. Lauren is busy getting re-acquainted with her old stomping grounds and is astonished by how the food and wine scene has changed in Austin in the past 8 years. Lauren also blogs about cooking and parenthood on gourmetveggiemama.com.[/author_info] [/author]