Ahhh, so St. Louis has been in a down pour for three days straight...
It's strange, but at times I enjoy dreary weather. Time slows down a bit and being indoors feels warm and inviting.
And the kitchen is at its peak.
This week, it's pumpkin bread time.
When I think of pumpkin bread, I think of my mom. Her moist pumpkin bread always ends up sliced on our kitchen counter during the holidays... or any time of the year, for that matter. My mom can whip up her bread, flawless and perfectly baked - every time. Proof that moms are just that good.
Although everyone has their own go-to pumpkin bread recipe, we (or me at least!) are still constantly searching for new versions or twists on old classics. Well, that's where this bread comes in. I was inspired by the use of maple syrup and spices in Danielle Walker's pumpkin muffins, and used them in this bread.
As always, bakers inspire bakers.
No matter if I bake a new recipe or make my mom's traditional one... the methods and steps evoke memories spent in the kitchen. And at the end of the day, that's what baking is all about.
Pumpkin Bread with Dark Chocolate
- 2 1/4 cups whole-wheat pastry flour (for grain-free bread, use 2 cups almond flour + 3 tbsp coconut flour)
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 3/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/4 teaspoon cloves
- 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
- 3/4 cup pure pumpkin puree
- 1/3 cup pure maple syrup
- 2 tablespoons dark brown sugar
- 2 eggs
- 2 tablespoons melted coconut oil
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup chopped dark chocolate
- 1 tablespoon cinnamon & sugar mixture (to sprinkle on top of batter)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees and spray an 8-inch loaf pan (or two small loaf pans) with nonstick spray.
- In a bowl, whisk the flour(s) with the baking soda, spices and salt.
- In another bowl, whisk the pumpkin, maple syrup, brown sugar, eggs, coconut oil and vanilla extract. Fold into the flour mixture and mix with a wooden spoon until combined. Then, fold in the chopped chocolate, reserving some for the topping.
- Pour the batter into a bread pan and smooth out the top. Sprinkle the remaining chocolate on top. Then, sprinkle the top with a mixture of cinnamon & sugar. Bake for about 25 minutes, rotating halfway through baking, until top is golden and a toothpick comes out clean. Take out of oven and let cool in the bread pan. Once cool, invert the bread on a wire rack and then store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for a week.
Go ahead. Get yourself in the holiday mood and into the kitchen already!