Thursday, January 3, 2013

Spiced Cider & Pumpkin Bread

Homemade pumpkin puree
I don't really get into the baking mood much, but on Christmas morning this year, I was overcome with the notorious holiday baking bug.  We had two sugar pumpkins getting pretty ripe, so we cut those suckers up and roasted them, then pureed the roasted insides.  I had some delicious, dark cider left over in the fridge, and thought I'd use that and mulling spices in the pumpkin bread!  It was great!  Not especially sweet, but very moist and spiced!  I think I might make this a Christmas tradition.

And nothing says Christmas like busting out some old school Agent Orange being "Too Young To Die".  (And, you know... pumpkins... orange... etc.)  -jen

Roasting sugar pumpkins
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time:  60 minutes
Yields:  2 loaves 
  • 2 cups brown sugar
  • 2 cups pumpkin puree
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 cup apple cider
  • 4 and 1/2 cups flour
  • 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon powdered ginger
  • 1 teaspoon ground allspice 
  • 1 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 teaspoon cardamom
  • zest of 1 orange
  • 2 tablespoons baking powder
  • 1 cup chopped pecans
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Generously coat 2 loaf pans with non-stick cooking spray and set aside.

Combine brown sugar, pumpkin, eggs, vegetable oil and cider.  Add flour, cinnamon, ginger, allspice, cloves, cardamom, orange zest and baking powder and mix until thoroughly combined.  Stir in pecans and divide batter equally into the two loaf pans.  Bake for 60 minutes or until a knife inserted comes out clean.  Cool on baking rack until room temp.

Note:  If you'd like to make your own pumpkin puree, quarter a sugar pumpkin and roast at 350 degrees F for 1 hour.  Let cool, remove skin, and puree in a food processor or with an stick blender.  A medium sugar pumpkin will yield about 2 cups of puree.  

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