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Sweet Pumpkin Spice Bread

Patricia Reitz

 Sweet Pumpkin Spice Bread - ButterYum —

Sweet Pumpkin Spice Bread - ButterYum —

It’s October which means pumpkin spice season has arrived. I like a few pumpkin spice things, but I know some people who are completely obsessed. They go gaga for everything pumpkin spice. Whether you fall into that obsessed category or not, you’ll love this simple quick bread. And feel free to use canned pumpkin puree (not canned pie filling), which is often less fibrous than fresh pumpkin puree.

Note: If you’d like to try making your own pumpkin puree, pick up a sugar pumpkin from your local farmer’s market. Cut it in half and scoop out the seeds, place it cut side down on a rimmed, oiled half sheet pan, piercing the halves in several places with a sharp knife. Bake in a 400F oven for about 30 minutes, or until the flesh is soft and can easily be scooped out. Cool completely, then puree in a food processor or blender until smooth (you can skip this step if your pumpkin isn’t too fibrous).

Start by preheating the oven to 350F and place the oven rack in the lower middle positions. Prepare your pan by spraying with Baker’s Joy; set aside until needed.

In a mixing bowl, combine the pumpkin, applesauce, sugar, and eggs.

Whisk to combine.

In another mixing bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cloves, cinnamon, and nutmeg.

Whisk well to combine.

Pour the pumpkin mixture into the flour mixture and mix well with a rubber or silicone spatula.

No traces of dry ingredients should remain.

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Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake as directed below.

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Cool completely before serving. Enjoy!


PUMPKIN SPICE BREAD

makes one 4.5 x 8.5-inch loaf

Printable Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1 cup pumpkin puree (fresh or canned)

  • 4 ounces applesauce

  • 1 1/3 cup granulated sugar

  • 2 large eggs

  • 1 1/2 cup all purpose flour

  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda

  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder

  • 1/2 teaspoon fine salt

  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves

  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg (or double if using dried)

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350F, coat a 9x5-inch metal loaf pan with Baker’s Joy spray, and place oven rack in lower center position.

  2. In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the pumpkin puree, applesauce, sugar, and eggs; set aside.

  3. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together flour, nutmeg, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cloves, and cinnamon.

  4. Pour pumpkin mixture into flour mixture and whisk until no dry lumps remain.

  5. Spread batter evenly in prepared loaf pan and bake for 50-60 minutes or until a wooden skewer inserted in the center (and all the way down to the bottom of the pan) comes out clean.

  6. Remove bread from oven and rest for 10- 15 minutes before unmolding.

  7. Allow bread to cool completely on a rack before slicing.

Notes

  • To make pumpkin puree, preheat oven to 400F. Cut pumpkin in half, scoop out and remove seeds. Place halves, cut side down, on an oiled half sheet pan. Pierce skin with knife in several places. Bake for about 30 minutes or until the outer skin softens and gives under pressure. When cool enough to handle, scoop flesh and use a food processor or blender to puree (you can skip this step if your squash doesn't have a stringy texture).

  • Freeze leftover pureed pumpkin in 1-cup portions so you can bake a fresh loaf whenever the mood strikes.

  • This bread freezes beautifully when vacuum sealed or wrapped well in plastic followed by heavy-duty foil, being sure to seal very well. Thaw overnight in the fridge before unwrapping.

Apple Cinnamon and Maple Granola

Patricia Reitz

 Apple Cinnamon and Maple Granola - ButterYum -- 

Apple Cinnamon and Maple Granola - ButterYum -- 

I love granola, but I can't stand how expensive it is to purchase when you consider how inexpensive it is to make yourself... and you can customize it to suit your taste.  This is my adaptation of a David Lebovitz adaptation of a Nigella Lawson recipe - don't you love how that happens?  It's pretty tasty as is, but feel free to switch it up by changing the nuts and spices, or by adding any number of dried fruits - you could even add things like wheat germ, chia seeds, ground flax, or hemp seeds.  Just be sure the mixture isn't too dry when you put it in the oven - it should be wet enough to form clumps.  Also, I like to add dried fruits AFTER baking.

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Here we have old fashioned oats, chopped almonds, sesame seeds, grown sugar, cinnamon, ginger, and salt.

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Add a mixture of maple syrup, applesauce, oil, and vanilla that has been heated slightly.  Stir until well mixed and no dry ingredients remain.

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Divide the mixture on two half sheet pans and place in a preheated 300F oven for 45 minutes, stirring and switching pan positions every 15 minutes (the pans should be placed on the upper center and lower center racks).  You want there to be some clumps, but break up any clumps that are too large.

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Remove from oven and cool completely before placing in an airtight container for up to a month.

Items used to make this recipe:


Apple Cinnamon and Maple Granola

makes 12 servings

Printable Recipe

Ingredients

  • 5 cups old fashioned rolled oats
  • 1 cup almonds, chopped
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon dried ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon fine salt
  • 3/4 cup applesauce
  • 1/2 cup pure maple syrup
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 300F.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine the oats, almonds, brown sugar, cinnamon, ginger, and salt until all the ingredients are evenly distributed.
  3. In a small saucepan, heat together the applesauce, syrup, oil, and pure vanilla extract.
  4. Pour the heated applesauce mixture over the oat mixture and mix well to combine.
  5. Divide oat mixture evenly over 2 half sheet pans and place in upper and lower middle racks.
  6. Bake for 45 minutes, stirring and switching rack positions every 15 minutes; breaking up very large clumps as needed.
  7. Remove from oven and cool completely before storing in an airtight container.

adapted from David Lebovits and Nigella Lawson (originally from Andy Rolleri)

Blackberry Fools

Patricia Reitz

 Blackberry Fool - ButterYum -- 

Blackberry Fool - ButterYum -- 

I found the most amazing blackberries at the market the other day - they were super sweet and delicious and I couldn't wait to use them to make Blackberry Fool, an incredibly simple, yet elegant dessert. 

In case you're wondering, fruit fool recipes first started appearing in the year 1598 - the word fool is thought to be derived from the french word "fouler" which means to press or mash.

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When choosing blackberries, pick ones that are completely black, and taste them to make sure they're sweet because they won't ripen after being picked. 

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To make blackberry puree, place ripe blackberries and lemon zest in a personal blender or small food processor.

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Blitz the berries until completely pulverized.  

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Then pass the puree through a fine mesh strainer to remove the seeds.  A silicone scraper is pretty helpful here.

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Blackberries contain a LOT of seeds so you definitely want to remove them (discard them or feed them to the chickens). 

Mmmm.... smooth, seedless blackberry puree.

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To make blackberry fool, fold together one part blackberry puree and 4 parts sweetened whipped cream (recipe below).

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You can leave the mixture a little streaky if you like - I think the streaks look kind of cool.

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Or if you're a bit compulsive and you can't help but continue to fold the two components together until they're completely mixed, go for it.  You do you.

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Spoon or pipe the mixture into dessert cups.  The dessert cups I chose (these) have very small openings so I filled them using a pastry bag to keep the cups neat and clean.  

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To complete the presentation, pipe some leftover whipped cream on top using a large closed star tip (like this one) and garnished with a mint leaf.  Enjoy!

Items used to make this recipe:


Blackberry Fool

Makes 6-8 mini desserts (3-ounce)

Printable Recipe

Ingredients

  • 6 ounce ripe blackberries (or other berries)
  • zest from 1/2 lemon
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Directions

  1. Make berry puree by blitzing berries with lemon zest in a personal blender or small food processor; strain seeds and discard.
  2. In a small mixing bowl, whip heavy cream, sugar, and vanilla using a handheld mixer until stiff peaks form.
  3. In another small mixing bowl, fold together 6 tablespoons strained blackberry puree and 1 1/2 cups of sweetened whipped cream until combined (a few streaks remaining look lovely).
  4. To neatly fill dessert cups, transfer berry and cream mixture to a piping bag and carefully fill six 3-ounce mini dessert cups (eight dessert cups if you don't fill them as full).
  5. Place remaining whipped cream in another piping bag filled with a closed star tip and top each dessert.  
  6. Garnish with a mint leaf and/or a drizzle of the remaining blackberry puree.

Note:  the blackberries can be substituted with other seasonal berries.