Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Spiced Pumpkin Bread

Happy Halloween! I know it's a little bit late, but I wanted to acknowledge the holiday, even if its purpose is a little questionable. Halloween is 1000 times better when you have a kid, I realized this year. It was so fun making all of our costumes so that we could all coordinate. I know that in two or three years he's going to want to do his own thing and it will be more difficult to all match, so this year was really fun!

If you couldn't tell, Evan was Han Solo, I was Princess Leia, and Alex was R2D2

One thing that really surprised me this year for Halloween is that the trick-or-treaters made their way around the neighborhood super early. We were completely cleaned out of candy before 5:30. Maybe it's just because I grew up in the northwest where it gets dark a touch earlier than here in Utah, but I remember always going trick-or-treating when it was dark out. I guess it's safer this way, or they get to go to more neighborhoods. But it made us feel a little awkward because we had to just shut our lights off and pretend we weren't home for a while.

But anyway, Halloween always reminds me of pumpkins and I love pumpkin pretty much anything! We busted out our first can way before October rolled around and there's no sign of getting bored of it yet. One of my favorite things to make is pumpkin bread, and here's my recipe:

Spiced Pumpkin Bread
(makes two regular or four mini loaves)

2 cups flour
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon cloves
1/2 teaspoon ginger
2 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup pumpkin (I highly recommend Libby's)
1 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup apple cider 
2 eggs
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Combine all dry ingredients into a medium bowl. Mix pumpkin, sugar, cider, eggs, oil, and vanilla together and stir well. Add flour mixture and stir just until moistened. Divide into greased loaf pans. 

Bake 65 to 70 minutes at 350 degrees or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool in pan for 10 minutes, then remove to continue cooling. 

This is a perfect gift to give out to neighbors, especially if you make them in mini loaves. It's delicious served warm with butter. Or if you're like me and love hot chocolate, you can dip it in a warm, steamy cup!


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