Bread… it’s what’s for dinner.
At least if you live in my house. Actually, if you lived in my house last night your dinner would have consisted of some very hastily purchased $8 cookies… oh chocolate chewies, I hate you something fierce. I mean I love you. But hate you.
You know what I mean.
But so this bread… it’s, like, so good that you COULD eat it just for dinner. I mean if you eat it for breakfast then why can’t you eat it for dinner?
I initially ignored the whole english muffin bread craze after seeing in on Pinterest. I definitely discovered it there because I had no idea that you could even make english muffins, let alone english muffin BREAD. I mean, what? It’s amazing what our world can do. But then I happened to be in the grocery store a few weeks ago and since it’s OMGpumpkinseason my eyes were peeled for everything new. I do not joke when I say I am a marketer’s dream. I am pathetic. And my peepers immediately flew to the pumpkin spice english muffins. Like moths to a flame!
So I bought some. And they were pretty good, but I hated that they weren’t our normal whole wheat english muffins. Why couldn’t we have both? And then I decided that it was high time I tried to make that dumb bread everyone raves about. And that’s what I did.
Oh but not really. I made the bread, and as you can see I made it in my outrageously large loaf pan because even though I can justify a $200 pair of shoes I cannot bring myself to buy a second $15 loaf pan.
Riddle me that.
Hence the short and fat slices. But I love the short and fat slices! So perfect for toast, so perfect for two or three servings, so perfect to be slathered in gooey sugar butter that melts into those nooks and crannies that you can actually create at home in your own kitchen. I never thought I’d love craters in bread so much.
Yield: 2 loaves
Prep Time: 1 hour
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Total Time: about 2 hours (with cooling time)
2 cups whole wheat flour
3 cups all-purpose flour
2 packages (4 1/2 teaspoons) active dry yeast
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 tablespoon honey
1/2 tablespoon olive oil
1/3 cup pureed pumpkin
2 cups warm milk, 120-130 degrees
1/2 cup warm water, 120-130 degrees
cornmeal for loaf pans
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
1 1/2 tablespoons brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
Grease or spray two loaf pans (the original called for 8x4 inch pans, I only have 10x5 inch pans - they worked fine) with non-stick spray and sprinkle with cornmeal, shuffling the pan around so the cornmeal coats all the sides. Dump the excess.
In the bowl of your electric mixer (fitted with the beater attachment), combine whole wheat flour, yeast, pumpkin pie spice and baking soda. Add in milk, pumpkin, honey, olive oil and water, beating on low speed until combined, about 30 seconds. Increase the speed to medium-high and beat for 3 minutes, scraping down the sides if necessary. Decrease speed to low and add in remaining flour and salt, mixing until just combined - do not overmix, do not knead. The dough will be sticky. Divide batter equally into two loaf pans and sprinkle the tops with cornmeal. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled in size, about 45-60 minutes.
After about 30 minutes of the dough rising, preheat oven to 375 degrees. Bake loaves for 35 minutes, or until tops are golden brown. Remove from the oven and immediately remove from pans, setting aside to cool. We like the best toasted - you really get all the nooks and crannies!
Combine all ingredients together in a bowl and stir until well combined. Spread on warm toast. Store at room temperature for a day or two, or store in the fridge for a few weeks - not that it would ever last that long.
[bread slightly adapted from taste of home]
This is not helping my toast addiction. Not one bit.