Try-it Tuesday!

pumpkin bread Collage

Homemade Pumpkin bread…. mmmm….  But first, you need to know about this product from Trader Joe’s.

superfood-pilaf

You guys!  Stop whatever you’re doing and run to Trader Joe’s!  No, seriously!  This stuff is ridiculously delicious!  I just bought it last week and I love love love it!  You can find it in the frozen section and it costs $3.99.  I followed the directions for the stove top preparation but I added a tablespoon of butter and a pinch of cayenne at the end.  I also threw two eggs over-easy on top.  Delish!

After that fantastic lunch or light dinner, chances are you’ll need a lovely sweet treat.  How about Pumpkin Bread, home-made Pumpkin Bread…no no, not from a box.  We’re talking “scratch baked” bread.  Think of how wonderful your house will smell and how proud you’ll be when you’ll tell your family that you made it from scratch!  Do you know how to do that???  No?  Me either.  But have no fear!  Erica is here!!

Hi everyone!  My name is Erica Stoke and I met Mama Momtourage through my daughter Reese who is friends with Lyla from school and soccer.  The mighty Folsom Unicorns is the team…they are a force to be reckoned with in the Under 5 crowd!

I am a new-ish SAHM (since March this year).  Prior to getting more time with the kiddos I held several roles at Genentech over 13 years, most recently Training Supervisor.  Loved the company, hated the commute to Vacaville!  I have two kids, Kohen, a boy who is almost 8, and Reese, a girl who just turned 5.  They are the sweetest little beings on earth and though they can sometimes be a handful (what kid isn’t, right?) they are my favorites.  I love them to the moon and back, as they say…

reese and Erica

 

Here I am with Reese being silly.

Kohen and kooper

 

And here is Kohen with our 4-month-old Weimaraner, Kooper.

dog pack

 

Oh yeah, Kooper is also a “kid” in the house.  Yes, I’ll be the first to admit that I am one of those crazy dog people.  The dog is a part of the family; he is treated like a human, sleeps on the coach and bed. We heart him.  If I ever meet you, I guarantee that you will also meet Kooper.  He goes everywhere with us.   That reminds me, I need to buy one of these dog carriers.

erica and jason

My hubby, Jason and I have been together for 18 years, married for 12.  We met in college and we are each other’s best friends.  Next year we will be together for longer than we have been apart…crazy right?

Ok, enough about me and more on why I am here today!

I have been totally bit by the crockpot bug with all of the great tips Mama Momtourage has taught us.  I made her crockpot chicken and of course had dinner for an entire week.  Even the kiddos ate the quesadillas I made.  To venture away from mac-n-cheese and chicken nuggets in our house is a bit of a feat, so I was more than pleased.  I don’t like to cook, so the crockpot has been a lifesaver.  I feel like a bit of a gourmet chef because of it.  But don’t judge me because I don’t like to cook.  I find that people are either cookers or bakers, and I am the latter.  And all of this “crock potting” is great, but ya know what’s missing for us, mamas?  Dessert!!!

I have always enjoyed baking…the creative process, the precision required, the joy in providing something sweet and delicious for others.  So here I am, a huge fan of baking tasty treats and what better time to bake and share than the Holidays?

pumpkin bread Collage

So let’s start with the MOST delicious Pumpkin Bread ever, and it is so easy to make you just won’t believe it.  My only request is that you be PRECISE!  Don’t mess with the amounts until you’ve tried it at least once.  Baking is a science experiment and following a recipe ensures that nothing will “blow up”!  This is what annoys me about my “cooker” friends…always saying “oh just add a pinch of this and just use whatever other vegetables are in your house…” Baking is not like this, people!

1 can pure pumpkin (15 oz)…please NEVER use the pumpkin that has the spices already in it.  So gross!  It’s always better to control your own spice mixture.

4 eggs

1 cup vegetable oil

2/3 cup water

2 ½ cups sugar

3 ½ cups flour

1 tsp cinnamon

1 tsp nutmeg

½ tsp cloves

¼ tsp ginger

¼ tsp allspice

2 tsp baking soda

1 ½ tsp salt

ingredients 1

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Grease and flour three 7×3 inch loaf pans.  If you don’t have this size, buy them!  They are the perfect size for gifting loaves during the Holidays.  You can also use two regular size loaf pans but you will need to adjust the cooking time.

In a large bowl whisk together the wet ingredients: pumpkin, eggs, oil and water.

wet ingedients wet ingedients 2

Add in the sugar.

adding sugar

Mmmmmm, sugar…it’s so bad and yet so good.

I like to use my Pyrex measuring cup to collect the dry ingredients.  Why dirty more than one bowl, right?  Measure the flour into a 4-cup Pyrex, and add the remaining dry ingredients.

dry ingredients

Using a fork, mix the dry ingredients a bit so they mesh together.

mix the dry ingredients

Add the dry ingredients into the pumpkin mixture, a little bit at a time, and mix until smooth.

mix wet and dry together mix wet and dry together 2

Evenly pour the mixture into the prepared pans.

poor into prepped panspour into prepped pans 2

Place the pans into the top third of the oven and cook for 50-70 minutes.  Oven times really do vary, so check the progress at 50 minutes and then in 10-minute increments thereafter.  A toothpick inserted in the highest part of each loaf will be the best indication of being ready.  It should come out of the loaf completely dry!

Let cool on a wire rack for about 20 minutes, then remove the loaves from their pans.  The pumpkin bread is ready to eat, however if you can wait 24 hours I promise you it will taste even better when the spice flavors have had a chance to develop!

photo-16

These loaves make great gifts and can also be easily frozen and defrosted for a later date.

Hope you enjoyed this baking lesson!

Enjoy!

~Erica

That looks so delicious!  And I can say from experience…it tastes even better than it looks!  She gifted me some of this almost a month ago.  It barely lasted an hour in my house!  Thanks a million Erica for cooking lesson!

Happy baking!

XOXO
A

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