I do love all things pumpkin! This year – for the first time – I cooked my own pie pumpkin to use in bread and my favorite pumpkin waffles and pumpkin biscuits. The pumpkin was sold by weight and was a little pricey by my opinion. The whole process was easy to do; cut it in half, scoop out the seeds, bake until soft, scoop out the flesh and puree in the food processor. I got a little more than 6 cups of pumpkin puree from my $7 pumpkin. It tasted pretty good but there shall never be guilt again from using canned pumpkin!
I have made this recipe for years. It comes from a very old Cooking Light recipe I have tweaked over the years and I have made it into both loaves and muffins. I have always liked the spice mix – it is close to pumpkin pie spice but much better! A couple weeks ago I made the first round of these loaves with my fresh pumpkin. This works as breakfast and snack food at our house; toasted with a little cream cheese. Last week I set out to make more and gifted my family with the addition of dark chocolate chips. These went to a whole other level! We still ate it for breakfast and snacks but it also migrated to dessert. After using up all the pumpkin puree (that totaled 6 loaves in two weeks), I may need to take a little break.
Spicy Pumpkin Bread
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
In a large bowl, combine 3 1/2 cups of flour (I use white whole wheat) with 1 teaspoon ground allspice, 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon, 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg, 1/2 teaspoon cloves, 3/4 teaspoon salt, 2 teaspoons baking powder, and 1/2 teaspoon baking soda. Make a well in the center of the mixture.
In another bowl, stir together 3/4 cup packed brown sugar, 3/4 cup fat free buttermilk, 1/3 cup canola oil, 2 teaspoons vanilla extract, 2 large eggs, and 1 (15-ounce) can pumpkin. Add this to the flour mixture and stir just until moist. If desired, add 1/2 to 3/4 cup of dark chocolate chips.
Coat 2 loaf pans with cooking spray. Divide the mixture between the two pans and sprinkle 1/3 cup chopped walnuts or pecans on the top. Bake for 1 hour or until a wooden toothpick inserted in the loaves comes out clean. Cool in the pans for about 10 minutes then remove the loaves from the pans, cool, and enjoy!!
You could always freeze one of the loaves for later, share it with a friend, or just know both loaves will disappear from your house in a couple of days.
~ The Mildly Manic Mom