The very first thing I can remember making on a regular basis–when I was right on the precipice of becoming an amateur gourmet—was pumpkin bread. It’s a great recipe to start with if you’re scared of the kitchen, if you don’t have fancy equipment, if you want all the pleasures of baking without the hassle. It requires two bowls and a whisk. And loaf pans. That’s all. And your apartment will smell like heaven.
I was looking for that recipe the other day, but then I opened my Gourmet cookbook and found this recipe for Pumpkin Apple Bread. If fall were bundled up and baked in a loaf, it would look (taste, and smell) like this:
I just tried to find the recipe on Epicurious because it’s in the Gourmet cookbook, but it’s not there. So I will do as I’ve been doing, lately, and type it out for your cooking pleasure. I am too good to you people.
I love all the spices in here though some people don’t. Like my mom, for example. She once tasted my chai tea and said: “Blech! There’s cloves in there! I hate cloves!”
So if you are anti-Autumnal, like my mom, you may want to stay away—but you fall lovers, step up. This is the bread for you.
1 Tbs all-purpose flour
5 Tbs sugar
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 Tbs unsalted butter, softened
3 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 tsp salt
2 tsps baking soda
1 1/2 tsps ground cinnamon
1 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
1/4 tsp ground cloves
1/4 tsp ground allspice
1 (15-oz) can solid-pack pumpkin
3/4 cup vegetable oil
2 1/4 cups sugar
4 large eggs, lightly beaten
2 Granny smith apples, peeled, cored, and chopped (2 cups)
MAKE THE TOPPING: Blend together flour, sugar, cinnamon, and butter in a small bowl with your fingertips until mixture resembles coarse meal.
MAKE THE BREAD: Put a rack in the middle of oven and preheat oven to 350F. Butter two 9 X 5 inch loaf pans.
Sift together flour, salt, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and allspice into a medium bowl.
Whisk together pumpkin…
[Note on my pumpkin! This was the only pumpkin I could find in either Whole Foods or Gristede’s. I’m not convinced it’s solid packed. But the end result was still ok. END NOTE.]
…oil, sugar, and eggs in a large bowl. Add flour mixture, stirring until well combined. Fold in apples
Divide batter between buttered loaf pans. Sprinkle half of topping evenly over each loaf.
Bake until a wooden pick or skewer inserted in center of bread comes out clean, 50 to 60 minutes.
Cool loves in pans on a rack for 45 minutes, then turn out onto rack and cool completely, about 1 hour.
I stupidly made this very late at night (as I am wont to do) and couldn’t resist a piece at 2 am, when it cooled. This was a bad idea. There is so much sugar in here, I was up for hours.
But my my my, did my apartment smell great. And did this taste great. As a testament to how great it tastes, I dropped half the bread on the floor just now and I’m still going to eat it. Ya, you can judge me, but whatever. I like this bread. Deal with it.