Wednesday, December 30, 2009

squash bread

I worked on Christmas, so had to bring something for our potluck. As I planned to spend most of Xmas eve day at Annie's, I needed to bring a dish that didn't take much time or advance preparation. I actually ended up taking two things--a pie made of leftover applesauce and cranberries from the previous week's latkes, and this very successful bread.

pumpkin bread

Squash Bread à la New York Times

makes one big loaf

800g all-purpose flour
300g pumpkin purée (I had it frozen, but canned would also be good)
400ml water
1t instant yeast (2g)
2t salt (15g)
200g raisins
150g chopped pecans
2t cumin seed
wheat bran

On the morning of the day before you plan to bake, mix everything but the bran together till there are no visible streaks of flour or squash remaining. Do a couple of stretch and folds over the next hour, then let it rise in a not-too-warm place till just before bedtime.

That night, scrape the dough onto a lightly floured counter and roughly shape it into either a round or oblong loaf, depending on what pan you plan to use to bake it. Generously cloak with bran, and set into an appropriately shaped dish (round bowl or oblong pan) sufficient to contain it when it's risen one and a half times and lined with a well-floured linen cloth. Rye flour, if you have some, has better non-stick properties than wheat. Put everything into a big plastic bag to prevent a skin forming prematurely on the loaf. If your house is warm at night, put in the refrigerator; otherwise, leave out on the counter.

When you get up preheat the oven to 425° with a 7 liter heavy, lidded casserole in it (I use this). If the dough's in the fridge, get it out and let it warm up. After an hour, carefully turn the loaf out into the hot pan, put the lid on, and bake for 25 minutes. Take the lid off and bake for another 25 minutes, or until its internal temperature is over 200° or it sounds hollow when tapped on the bottom.

pumpkin bread ii


joannamauselina said...

Cumin? Sounds suspicious, but you are, of course, always right! Is that my pan? Did it cost that much? Surely now! The bread looks très yummy. Would walnuts do in place of the pecans?

Diane said...

I , too, was wondering about the cumin. I agree with Ms. Mauselina, though, you are always right, so I'll give it a try. I'm sad I'll have to convert to volume since I don't have a scale.