Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Pumpkin Bread

As a special request, my mom wanted some sort of quick bread/cake/muffin that could easily be presented as a Christmas offering. She didn't really specify what she wanted, so I went ahead & decided on Eggnog Pound Cake & Pumpkin Bread. When we were at Central Market, I picked up some decorative paper molds. Now, the difficulty was trying to find a recipe which would be compatible with the volume of these molds. And of course, the second obstacle...I only needed about 4 mini loaves. The instructions that came with the molds specified to fill them about 1/3 - 1/2 full & to reduce baking time as deemed necessary. Boy...that's a lot of different things to consider & definitely took a little extra creativity on my half.
The adventure begins: I split the Eggnog recipe into one-third and halved the Pumpkin bread recipe. Tricky indeed, as messing with a perfectly good recipe can always end in disaster. How it ended (partially): the pumpkin bread turned out beautifully, only in the looks department, as taste testing would be highly inappropriate for a loaf. The receiver may just notice. The eggnog cake didn't turn out as beautifully domed as the cupcakes/muffins, but at least they did not completely sink in the middle. Same applies with taste testing of course. I'm not quite sure what went wrong, it may be the amount of baking powder & other oddly measured/estimated ingredients, or I over filled the molds, which is likely my personal culprit. Both for the pumpkin & eggnog, the molds were about 3/4 full.
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Pumpkin Bread w/ Walnuts & Raisins
3/4 cup AP flour
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp allspice
dash of ginger

1/2 cup pumpkin puree, 4 ounces
1/4 cup vegetable oil (coconut/canola)
1 egg, beaten
1/8 cup H20 (rice milk, 1 ounce)

1/4 cup walnuts, roughly chopped
1/8 cup chopped raisins
  • Preheat oven to 350F, 325F if using dark decorative molds. Prepare mini loaf pans, set aside.
  • In a medium bowl, sift & combine together dry ingredients.
  • In a larger bowl, combine together wet ingredients.
  • Add dry ingredients into the wet mixture & mix until barely combined, DO NOT OVERMIX.
  • Fold in walnuts & raisins.
  • Divide evenly among 2 - 3 mini molds.
  • Bake for 45 - 50 minutes, until an toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean & the bread is evenly golden brown.
  • Remove from oven & transfer to cooling rack.
  • Makes 2 - 3 mini loaves.
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Eggnog Pound Cake
1/4 scant cup raisins, roughly chopped
2 tsp dark rum

5 tblspns + 1 tsp (1/3 tblspn) butter, room temperature
2/3 cup granulated sugar
1 tsp orange zest
1 large egg

1 cup AP flour
6/8 scant tsp baking powder (lil' less than 6/8 tsp, near 6/9)
pinch of salt
pinch of freshly grated nutmeg

1/3 cup eggnog + 1/4 tsp vanilla extract

Sugar glaze, optional
  • Soak the raisins in dark rum for about 15 minutes.
  • Adjust rack to lower third of the oven. Preheat oven to 325F. Prepare mini loaf pans. Set aside.
  • Using a hand mixer, beat the butter until creamy. Add sugar, orange zest & beat till light & fluffy, about 4 - 5 minutes. Scrape down the sides & bottom as needed to ensure even mixture.
  • Add egg & beat until combined.
  • In a separate bowl, sift together dry ingredients.
  • At a very slow speed, add dry & eggnog + vanilla, alternating a few times times, starting & ending with the dry ingredients (dry + eggnog + dry + eggnog + dry), scraping bowl as necessary. Do not overmix.
  • Fold in raisins w/ rum.
  • Divide among three mini loaf molds & spread evenly. Bake for 50 - 55 minutes, until toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean & edges are lightly golden.
  • Remove from oven & allow to cool.
  • If desired, drizzle top with sugar glaze (confectioner's sugar + H20)
  • Makes 2 - 3 mini loaves.

2 comments:

adam brown said...
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