Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Pumpkin Bread

It is cold here and will stay that way all weekend. I think I'm going to cook. I love the smell of baked goods on a wintery day. OK, truth be told, I like the smell of baked goods pretty much anytime.

I think this is a perfect day for making some pumpkin bread. My mom always made pumpkin bread and it is my brother, Jim's, favorite. Whenever he would come to visit her she would bake him loaves to take with him. I think there might have been occasions when he didn't necessarily want to share it when he got back home.

When I was in college, I wanted to make some one time and didn't have my mom's recipe. For some reason I couldn't reach her so I started going through cookbooks until I found one. (Yes, even then I had a predilection for cookbooks.) I mixed it up and it was pretty darned good.

When I was next home I took some and my mom decided it was better than the recipe she had been using. I knew I had "arrived" as a cook when my mom started using my pumpkin bread recipe and relegated her old one to the trash bin.

I often make it without nuts if I'm making it for a group of people because so many people don't like nuts. Mama, however, saw no point in making any baked good without a healthy addition of pecans. So, do as you will, it's good either way.

Pumpkin Bread

3 1/2 cups flour
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon nutmeg
2 teaspoons soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
3 cups sugar
1 cup oil
2/3 cup water
4 eggs
2 cups canned pumpkin
pecans (optional)

Mix dry ingredients. Then add other ingredients and mix well. Bake at 350 degrees for about an hour. Makes 2 loaves. This bread can be frozen after baking with no ill effects.

I like it plain, but also serve it with honey butter sometimes. I do swear by tea as the perfect accompaniment.

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