a NEW pumpkin choco-chip bread…

Posted on November 26, 2012

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Well–

Where do I begin? How about with this recent recipe whipped up as a gift for the sweet teachers at my little one’s school? We made gift baskets for them and it was a wonderful lesson in gratitude for her…

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip bread…I make this at least once every fall. So that’s not new. But what is new is what I care about for this recipe. I’ve been on a journey from fairly healthy-eating habits—through a busy season at work (financial audit) which made healthy eating and cooking sort of go out the door for a time…and then through a detox where I took out sugars, refined starches, coffee (gasp–I know), and dairy out to give my body a nice “cleanse” and refresh. Whew. Well, ever since that time, I’ve found my sensitivity to sugar to be intense, and have realized that I want to have a life that contains little-to-no-processed food, very little sugar (especially in form of corn syrup), and even, yes, gluten may be on it’s way out.

As you can imagine, for the amateur blogger whose every other post is muffins and desserts–this has been a rude awakening, a process of acceptance–a coming back to a point of peace and gratitude about being able to find the new intersection of healthy and delicious for myself and my family. It will be a journey. And I’m ready to embark on it, with you. As a friend wisely told me when we discussed her gluten free lifestyle—“It’s really so emotional–eating bread–and we can’t ignore that fact. We have to work with it…and grapple with those emotions.”

And the reasons and results (which are closely connected) for this change—an awareness of TRULY better health, less mood swings, more energy, the peace that I’m making the right choices for my body (and when I do make the occasional splurge in sugar–which I totally do) it’s interesting that it’s getting less and less enjoyable, and even the frustration that accompanied this process is subsiding…

Oh if only I could go back to those days were I lived on coffee and croissants while working my crazy hours as a young New Yorker…

Or not.

So, on to this recipe. I went to check out a Rachel Ray pumpkin bread recipe, hoping that I could finally try something of hers…

3 cups of white sugar. The same amount as the flour it called for. Seriously?

No thanks.

So I found another starting point–on an aol lifestyle website (do those even exist still? Apparently and Heidi Klum has one).

1 3/4 cup (1 15 oz. can) pureed pumpkin
1/3 cup butter, softened
1 cup dark or light brown sugar (yes, now we are talking. I did 1/2 cup and a bit of honey/stevia…so be creative).
3 eggs
3 cups whole wheat flour (or feel free to go with a gluten free flour–more from me on that all soon…I have to pick up some more tips from friends about xantham and all that…)
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 cup chocolate chips–Obviously if you are doing less sugar you may want these in, or you can replace with nuts for a nice texture

*Just want to comment that this recipe was designed the way I do recipes in my head–use as few different measurements as possible, to save on dishes/spoons, and for a beautiful simplicity. I truly hate recipes that ask you to put in 2 tbsp cinnamon, for example, and then 7/8 tsp ginger. Ginger is a totally forgotten spice–so equalize! And don’t force me to find that random tiny fraction of a teaspoon in my drawer just for kicks.

Continuing on…

Whisk butter and sugar and add eggs one at a time

In a separate bowl, combine dry ingredients and then add to the wet ingredients, stirring slowly, and then gently fold in chocolate chips. Do not over-mix!

(THAT, folks, was the oops of this recipe…I over-mixed).

Grease a 9” loaf pan and pop ‘er in.

Bake at 350 for 45 min or so.

More from me soon. Meanwhile—Happy late fall!

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