Hearty {and Healthy} Autumn Bread

One of the highlights of autumn is the availability of fresh pumpkin.  I just love selecting the prettiest pumpkins at the market, not only to decorate with, but to cook with as well!  Most people assume the only pumpkins you can cook with are the sweet little pie pumpkins, but that is absolutely not the case!
Those beautiful blue tinted Cinderella pumpkins?  
 
How about those large pale orange pumpkins that are just so elegant in a more formal setting?
 
Or the warty looking bright orange pumpkins?

And we can’t forget the simple white ghost pumpkins!

 

Each with their own slightly different and unique flavor, you can cook with all of them!I know you are wondering what you can do with that many pumpkins, so here are a few ideas.

First cook and puree your pumpkins.
{You can find instructions for that here}

With pureed pumpkin you have the basis for several dishes from maple/pumpkin oatmeal, cookies, or muffins to Thanksgiving dessert!

You can also make pumpkin butter

curried pumpkin bisque

a healthy pumpkin pie

or a very unhealthy (but absolutely delicious) pumpkin cheesecake, which uses the pumpkin butter that I posted just above.

That’s a lot of pumpkin recipes for just a few weeks of autumn holidays!

But I have one more that hits the spot as another healthy idea for using your pumpkins this fall.

A delicious Autumn bread!  I love this for so many reasons.
One serving (6-8 ounces) makes a quick breakfast or snack when I am on the run as it has a balanced proportion of protein and carbs.  It is very filling which keeps me from having the munchies between meal times.

It’s also a versatile recipe as you can make muffins (miniature or standard size) for grab & go access or to pack in school lunches.

Yes, it’s a healthy recipe that even my kiddos enjoy!

Ingredients:

4 Cups Organic Oat Flour
4 Cups Egg Whites (I prefer fresh, but you can use egg whites in the carton)
2 Cups fresh pumpkin puree
1/4- 1/3 Cup sweetener … I prefer Sweet N Low (depending on how sweet you like it)
4 Tablespoons Unsweetened Cocoa powder
2 Tablespoons Vanilla extract

**You can also add 1 1/2 Tablespoons cinnamon if you would like

Simple to assemble:  Thoroughly mix all ingredients together in a large bowl (I use my Kitchen Aid mixer with the paddle attachment) and pour into a bread pan (or muffin pan if your prefer) sprayed with PAM.  This makes a very thick batter and does not rise like a typical bread, so fill your pan nearly full.

Place into a preheated oven at 400 degrees.

Bake about 40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in several places comes out clean.  This is a moist bread.  If you make muffins, bake about 6-8 minutes.

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A few notes to help you out…

**For the oat flour you can purchase this in many of your grocery stores….

or you can make your own by pureeing unsweetened oatmeal in a food processor.

**Also, when you purchase vanilla extract, make sure you pick up vanilla that does NOT have high fructose corn syrup.  Just read the ingredients or there are brands that specify that it does not contain it.

**My decorative bread pan came from Williams-Sonoma, but any standard size bread pan will work.

**I have not tried this in a bread machine, so I recommend using the oven for best results.
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After you have removed your bread from the oven, allow to cool completely on a cooling rack before wrapping it up.  This will keep your bread from becoming soggy and dough like.

Wrap and save to serve for breakfast one morning, or eat a bite immediately!  It’s delicious warm or at room temperature!

From a family picnic last weekend

Enjoy!

 

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