Monday, December 1, 2008
If there's one recipe I've worked hard to "perfect," this is it.
So if you happen to have any extra pumpkin pie filling around, get baking!
This recipe was originally given to me by my mother-in-law, who has made it for years.
I've only slightly tweaked it, and it comes out (nearly) perfect every time. It also makes a great gift and freezes well.
1 1/2 cups sugar
(I sometimes cut this down to 1 cup, if I'm concerned about the spiked insulin levels of my recipients or making it for Chinese friends who "don't like sweet things")
1/2 tsp. nutmeg
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 cup oil
(okay, I know that's a lot of oil...but the bread tastes much better when it's moist. You can try 1/4 cup oil and 1/4 cup applesauce. I've done that, too).
3/4 to 1 cup cooked (or canned) pumpkin
(just depends on how much of a pumpkin freak you are...I always add at least 1 cup)
1/3 cup water
1 tsp. baking soda
1 1/2 cups flour
chocolate chips or walnuts (optional)
a little butter and sugar for the topping
1. Beat the sugar, eggs, and oil together. (sometimes I use a mixer, sometimes I do it by hand)
2. Add the cooked pumpkin, nutmeg, cinnamon, salt, and water and mix well.
3. Stir in the flour and baking soda. (you probably want to blend those ahead of time) Add chocolate chips and/or walnuts. Please add chocolate chips. They make everything better.
4. Grease (and flour, if you think that will help) a large loaf pan. Pour the mixture into the pan.
5. Bake for 1 hour at 350 degrees C, 170 degrees F. (my oven cooks things very fast, so I only bake it about 45 minutes, and I put my temp down to 100 degrees F. )
6. Okay, now here's the part you don't want to miss. When you pull the bread out of the oven, spread butter all over the top of it. (not margarine, folks...real butter). Then, sprinkle at least 1/4 cup sugar on top of that. Wait for the bread to cool, and then pop it out of the pan.
7. Enjoy with a nice cup of hot tea.