Thursday, October 16, 2008
I finally gave into my craving for the taste of autumn. Putting summer behind me and embracing the spicy warmth of fall flavors. It wasn't until the breads were in the oven for a good while and started to perfume the house with a deep spicy aroma that I realized that I love cold season cuisine the best. Albeit, I am a winter baby, but for some reason the hearty dishes that characterize the season seem to resound within me more than the light crisp flavors of spring and summer. Now don't get me wrong, I love lemonade and berry-based desserts as much as the next. However, lately my head is filled with anticipation for the taste of spiced apple cider, pumpkin and applie pies, egg nog-all very spice dominated foods. There's something about the deep complexity of fall foods that strikes me more than the innocent simplicity of spring and summer. Plus, I've been waiting all year to enjoy a much needed hot chocolate again. I can't wait to recreate the rich Spanish hot chocolate and churros that I ate almost every day on my trip to Spain last winter (my last dinner in Spain consisted of just hot chocolate and churros, hehe).
So as fall and winter step in I can't help but get excited at the prospect of all the yummy things that will be filling my house (and my tummy) over the next few months. Uh oh...I reckon that also ushers in the entrance of those inevitable holiday season pounds.
Downeast Maine Pumpkin Bread (from Allrecipes.com)
1 (15 ounce) can pumpkin puree
1 cup vegetable oil
2/3 cup water
3 cups white sugar
3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease and flour three 7x3 inch loaf pans.
In a large bowl, mix together pumpkin puree, eggs, oil, water and sugar until well blended. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and ginger. Stir the dry ingredients into the pumpkin mixture until just blended. Pour into the prepared pans.
Bake for about 50 minutes in the preheated oven. Loaves are done when toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.