Dear Jean Pare,

Sometimes you actually get it right.

This is one of my favorite recipes from the Muffins and More cookbook. If you don’t own that book, you should. Every mom in my family has a copy. It is loaded with tried, tested and true recipes for all sorts of muffins, loaves, quick breads, and a few coffee cakes. Unlike most of the other books in this series the recipes from Muffins and More almost always work out as predicted and yield delicious results. Splendid. Go buy it. Bake more often.

The following recipe for Pumpkin Tea Bread is on page 73 of Muffins and More. I have included in parentheses MY alternations to the recipe. Take them or leave them as you like. The quantity of batter that this recipe produces is far too much for one standard sized loaf tin. I would suggest dividing the batter between two tins and not filling them quite as full as you would normally.

Pumpkin bread
Image via Wikipedia

 Pumpkin Tea Bread

1/2 cup butter or margarine, softened (canola oil instead)

1 1/2  cups sugar (1 cup only)

2 eggs

1 cup canned pumpkin, without spice

1 Tbsp grated orange zest (grated zest of one orange)

1/4 cup orange juice (juice of one orange, strained)

2 1/4 cup flour

1/2 tsp baking powder

2 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 tsp cinnamon

1/2 tsp cloves

1/2 cup chopped nuts (golden raisins or whole cranberries)

In mixing bowl cream butter, sugar and 1 egg. Beat in second egg until smooth. Mix in pumpkin, zest and juice.In another bowl measure all remaining ingredients. Stir well. Add all at once to batter in mixing bowl. Stir just to moisten. Pour into greased 9x5x3 inch loaf pan. Bake in 350*F oven for about 1 hour or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean. Cool in pan 10 minutes. Remove loaf from pan to rack. Cool and wrap. Yield: 1 loaf.

This loaf is really one of my all time favorites. It has a great pumpkin flavor with a little hit of orange. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do. Remember!!!! Bake more often!   It is a worthwhile way to spend your time. If you find yourself living alone and incapable of eating so much loaf by yourself try doing what I do: Wait until the loaf is cool then slice it into thick slices. Butter each piece, individually wrap them and put half in the freezer and half in the fridge. Voila! Snacks ready to take with you to work for your lunches or to eat on the way out the door in the morning. Enjoy!

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