The final thing I cooked from my collection of recipes from the RelishRelish menu service was your basic Pumpkin Bread. This is a quick bread recipe. Frankly, I'm still daunted by the idea of using yeast in anything other than that aging yet trusty second-hand breadmaker I've got taking up space in the kitchen. The machine sells for more than a hundred dollars; I got mine for fifty at the local thrift store - and it has been worth it.
The only quibble I had with the Pumpkin Bread recipe was the addition of a bunch of vegetable oil. I do my best to eliminate oil from baked goods, so never add any to brownies. I just substitute a no-nonsense applesauce and go on about my business. There's no difference in taste to me. and the fat content of the final product is lower. I didn't give in to the oil temptation here, but instead used extra pumpkin. I added a bit of butter in as well; so much for that lower fat content.
The batter consisted of flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, sugar, eggs, water, and the aforementioned pumpkin and butter. The recipe also called for chopped pecans, so into the batter they went. It looked good and tasted good, too.
|Pumpkin Bread batter|
I was worried, though, because you never know what will happen when you mess around with ingredients. I also had to reduce the recipe by half because it was going to make two loaves. I only have one loaf pan and didn't want to improvise any further. I poured the batter into a greased and floured loaf pan, then baked for 45 minutes in a 350 degree oven. I crossed my fingers, went on to other things, and soon smelled a fabulous aroma coming from the kitchen.
I removed the bread from the oven and administered the "toothpick" test. The toothpick did come out clean, so I figured it was done. I laid the pan on its side to cool for a bit, and walked away.
I returned about five minutes later to find the center of the loaf slowly dribbling onto the stove. Oops! Looks like it wasn't really done after all. Back into the oven it went for another 15 minutes. And when it emerged, it did look tasty. This time I stuck it a few times with a toothpick just to be sure there would be no more messes on the stove top; that is until I cook again. (There's limited mise en place here, it's more mise en mess.)
I waited as long as I could and cut off a big hunk. Then I slathered on butter, and ate it up. The pumpkin bread was fresh, still warm from the oven and the butter melted with ease. I swooned. Since then, it's been my breakfast and late afternoon snack. It's all gone, and I still want more.
|Pumpkin Bread and Butter|
I'll confess, I am a certified RelishRelish junkie and heartily recommend the service for anyone looking for easy, fast, fresh food with a gourmet attitude. It's affordable, and you choose what recipes you want to prepare each week. The service also provides a grocery shopping list and all recipes every week.
When I've OD'd on Relish though, I look for other recipes that are equally satisfying and simple. And it's a long, slow slog through cookbook after cookbook, recipe after recipe, only to be disappointed. On the other hand, I discover delicious food, too. Wonder what I'll be cooking next? I sure hope it's not Alinea. There's a copy around here somewhere...