Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Pumpkin Cranberry Bread

I realize that some of you might think I'm a little late posting this recipe. But really I've always thought that pumpkins and cranberries should be enjoyed throughout the fall and winter - not just at Thanksgiving or Christmas. I roasted a gigantic Cinderella pumpkin in the fall and ended up freezing about four quarts of puree, so I am still enjoying cooking and baking with pumpkin into the new year.

This recipe was given to me by an old friend in a cookbook she put together for me when I went off to college. I never got around to making it til this holiday season, but it is so good I know I will come back to it again and again. It baked up dense and moist and flavorful. A delicious Christmas morning breakfast. The basic recipe is quite simple, so I tweaked it a bit: adding more cranberries, some nuts, decreasing the sugar a bit, and exchanging half the white sugar for brown. In the future I would like to try some other spices as well. I think ginger and cloves would both be delicious in this bread. The recipe also called for baking in a bundt pan. I used one bread pan instead. It was a large pan, and ended up being pretty full.

Pumpkin Cranberry Bread
2 1/4 cup flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
3/4 cup white sugar
1 cup brown sugar
2 eggs
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 cup pumpkin puree
1 1/2 cup cranberries
1/2 cup chopped pecans
Powdered sugar, for topping

Grease bread pan and preheat oven to 350. Combine first four ingredients and set aside. In another bowl, beat eggs until foamy. Beat in sugar, oil and pumpkin until well blended. Add to dry ingredients. Stir til just moistened. Gently fold in cranberries. Bake for about 75 minutes. In the bread pan, this was so dense that it took quite a while to bake. Unfortunately, I can't remember exactly how long. I had to put it back several times. I would check it at an hour, but plan on up to an hour and a half. After the cake has cooled, dust the top with powdered sugar and enjoy.

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