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Trying to be careful how I put this but we have tons of pumpkin puree this year, thanks to our two large pumpkins we had for Halloween and then never carved because we were gone for the celebration. I say it carefully because even though we have tons, we can never have enough of it, right? I think our neighbors will be thankful when apple and pumpkin season is over so that we can go back to other flavors of shared goodies. Hehe I get a little addicted on fresh from the farm ingredients that are in season. Mmm

I wish I could say we had but we still have apple cider sitting in our refrigerator that is fresh from a local farmer in Michigan. It is unpasteurized so it goes bad very fast, it is starting to get very tart and very “sparkly” so I had hoped to use it all this last week but I’m afraid the attempt was not as successful as my plans had charted out. Ah, well… more ideas to come. For now though, I tried out this recipe and it used up 2 full cups of apple cider – I know right? That’s a lot!

I mixed together this recipe thinking it was going to be short and sweet but unfortunately I found out that it was going to almost put me to tears. Are you emotional in the kitchen like me? I knew that it had a lot of wet ingredients and wondered how it was going to come together before tossing it all into the bowl but I had high hopes and seriously wanted to use up that apple cider (remember 2 cups of apple cider!). Unfortunately it used up more than double the amount of flour than the recipe suggested. Thankfully I had it on hand but wasn’t planning on using 5 cups of flour for this simple loaf of bread. Flour is a precious commodity during the holiday season after all…

Finally after my husband calmed me down, I added yet another cup of flour and it created a very sticky yet dough formation. Boy did it ever get a kneading, beating, I mean kneading… I let it rise according to the original direction and then angrily tossed it in two different bread pans. With gooey hands I tossed (maybe a little too roughly) into the oven and let it back for 30 minutes. Maybe I should look into kitchen anger management… When it came out, I was so frustrated with it, I made my husband try the first piece as I glared at the bread with as evil eyes as I could muster. My husband said it was wonderful and ate a few pieces to which I was delighted and then tried a piece myself. It is moist (thanks to the molasses) and fluffy inside. The outside was more like a quick bread but it did look good enough for me to share a loaf of bread. Through tear stained eyes, I handed over a piece of warm loaf to them too. It made two huge loaves of bread that we wouldn’t be able to eat alone. I’m sure the bread would last in the freezer but my freezer is full of summer fruit and vegetables. I think this is a wonderful addition to any meal this fall season, it is moist and savory, not a sweet bread. I think it would go good with a nice bowl of soup or even Thanksgiving dinner.

Here’s my changes to the original recipe: (you can make it minus the tears)
2 c fresh pumpkin puree
5 c flour (not enriched and unbleached)
2 tbsp yeast with ½ c water)
1 tbsp salt
2 tbsp corn oil
¼-½ c molasses (I used ½ c but it seemed like way too much)
2 c fresh apple cider

1. Mix the yeast and water in a small bowl. Set aside.
2. Mix all dry ingredients together in a large bowl. Add in the wet ingredients and yeast mixture. (You can subtract the tear shedding here and yelling here, I’m not sure if this step really helped at all.)
3. Place a towel over the top and place in a warm location for about 1 hour.
4. Divide the dough into two. Place each piece in a spray oiled bread loaf pan. Cover with a warm towel and set aside for about 1 hour.
5. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Place a pan in the bottom of the oven with 2 cups of water.
6. Bake the bread for about 30-40 minutes. It took my oven about 30 minutes until fully done inside. Go ahead and stab the top of the loaf with a fork and if it comes out clean, it is finished. (Again, try not to stab it as hard as mine, I made pieces falls off – oops!)
7. Let it set in the pan for about 10 minutes before removing to a cooling rack or a cutting board. Enjoy!

Please note the original recipe here:  I’m sure the creator had the original work – maybe it was me, I’m not sure… haha

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