01 September 2010

Hello September

First, some "newsy bits," as Rosaline at {this is glamorous} would call them.  I've been a very bad blogger this week and I can't promise that it will get better.  I can promise that Sunday night quotes and Things I Love Thursday will continue posting as usual.  Luckily this blog is still a baby and I can try out new things without too much confusion and / or uproar.

Now - pretty things that I love!  Even though tomorrow is TiLT, I just can't help it - I have too much love this week!  Even though the temperature says it's still summer, September officially begins autumn for me.  One of my favorite things about the Northeast is the beautiful fall foliage.  Such a wonderful reminder of how much change we experience every year, sometimes without even noticing. Plus, stepping on crunchy leaves is just so satisfying! ;)

My second favorite thing is, of course, seasonal flavors - pumpkin & apple!  Pumpkin us generally a later autumn flavor, but I have more recipes involving it because I love pumpkin.  Boyfriend has a weird aversion to most gourds (which means more pumpkin for me!) and was skeptical of this pumpkin bread recipe, but obviously, he loved it.  It makes multiple loaves of bread (the recipe says three, I only make two) so don't say I didn't warn you!

"Downeast Maine Pumpkin Bread"
makes three 7x3" loaves

1 15 oz can pumpkin puree
4 eggs
1 cup vegetable oil
2/3 cup water
3 cups white sugar
3 1/2 cups all purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
* if you don't have all the spices, you can substitute pumpkin pie spice

1. Preheat over to 350º F.  Grease and flour three 7x3 inch loaf pans.
2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and ginger.  In a large bowl, mix together pumpkin puree, eggs, oil, water and sugar until well blended.  Stir the dry ingredients into the pumpkin mixture until just blended.  Pour into the prepared pans.
3. Bake for about 50 minutes in preheated oven.  Loaves are done when a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.
Original recipe found at allrecipes.com

That sounds perfectly lovely, but when I've made this bread, I've done it a bit differently.  I usually substitute at least 1 cup of white sugar for brown sugar because it's less processed (and at least once I've subbed ALL of the white sugar for brown; it was delicious).  There are a lot of different ways to substitute out the oil if you're uncomfortable using a whole cup of it - check out the comments on the original recipe for some ideas.
Now, you can use a whole cup of oil and all three cups of white sugar but here is something you must do: sprinkle the tops of your loaves with brown sugar before putting them in oven.  The brown sugar will melt and caramelize and do all kinds of wonderful things in the oven.  You could even get a little crazy and put chopped walnuts on top!  Whoa.

All right - DISCLAIMER.  That beautiful picture of pumpkin bread up there?  Not from this recipe.  Every time I've made this bread it's been eaten up too quickly for me to take delicious pictures of it, so I had to ask Google to find something pretty and tasty.  Okay.  Now I feel better.  But I want to tell you two more things about this recipe and then I have to go kill a ladybug (is that bad luck?).  1) It freezes really nicely, and 2) it makes delicious toast.. but just a little bit of butter.  Don't get too crazy.

See you tomorrow for a not-as-long-winded Things I Love Thursday!


  1. I need input. I'm sending an email.

  2. Yayyy! Got the email. Have had a buuuusy busy day, but will respond tomorrow a.m. so it's not an incoherent-falling-asleep email :)