When Sara at i like to cook announced this month’s challenge, I was at a loss. I don’t have neglected gadgets. I would have written about my yogurt maker but I started using it again about a week before the announcement. Since I purge unloved cookbooks and gadgets on a regular basis I have to write about one of my recent acquisitions – mini loaf pans or mini tart pans.
The loaf pans were a birthday present from mom back in April. This was a good chance to use them , since they seem to be more of a fall implement. My mother’s mini loaf tin (similar to a muffin tin with 8 mini loaves) regularly got dusted off for Christmas baking. She typically prepared something regional (like date bread) or seasonal (like pumpkin bread or cinnamon apple bread). Each year’s offerings changed depending on surplus supplies or mom’s mood. Being uber-organized, she keeps a list of gifts she gives so as not to duplicate them. Her baking received the same treatment. None of our neighbors or friends received the same loaf twice.
I have individual silicone muffin cups, which are similar to the loaf pans. I like using them because I can make just a few muffins at a time. Fewer muffins means reduced temptation to eat a dozen fresh muffins right out of the oven. More often, the muffins disappear one at a time as my business takes me past the kitchen. Additionally, I love that no yummy muffin is lost from residue sticking to the paper – all the muffin is mine! The muffin cups work well for me and I was expecting similar results from the loaf pans. Some people argue that silicone is not worth the money because it does not brown properly. I personally like my quick breads to be the color of the inside on the outside. I would never make a loaf of yeast bread in a silicone pan. The pans were super easy to use and oh-so-easy to clean up. The loaves popped out of the pans easily and I could let them cool in the pan without needing a wire rack.
While I was researching ideas to share about squash, I ran across this recipe. It sounded so good and I had to have it right then and there. My taste buds demand comfort food when I’m sick, so it didn’t hurt anything that I was sick earlier in the week. This was right up my pumpkin goodness radar. Being me and never being able to leave a baked good alone, I adjusted the spice to fit my preference.
Ginger Pumpkin Bread
Adapted from Everyday Food October 2006
- 2 1/2 c all-purpose flour
- 2 t baking powder
- 2 t ground ginger
- 1 t ground cardamom (I felt that the recipe needed an extra punch of flavor)
- 1 t salt
- 1 c granulated sugar
- 1 c packed light-brown sugar
- 1 3/4 c pumpkin purée (I used a mixture of pumpkin and sweet potato, since I had two partial cans.)
- 12 T (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, melted (I accidentally melted 2 sticks and used it all)
- 3 large eggs
- Sugar glaze (optional – felt it was sweet enough on its own.) (recipe is at the above link)
- Preheat oven to 375 F. Set 4 mini silicone loaf pans on a baking sheet and 12 muffin cups in muffin tin. set aside.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together first 5 ingredients. In a large, mix together remaining ingredients; add flour mixture, and stir until just combined.
- Divide batter between prepared pans. Bake until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean, about 20 min for the muffins and 35 min for the mini loaves. Let cool completely. Glaze, if desired