Oh. Have you ever had One of Those Days? One of those days where you sort of wake up feeling a bit touchy, and then everything in your day seems to be plotting against you to bring out your worst possible reactions?
I had one of those days today. I would like to say “it was all their fault, though.” Whoever “they” are, it wasn’t. It was me!
Apologies were said. Forgiveness was given. The air was clear, and I was ready to cook. Or bake. Details, details!
“Are you sure this isn’t too much for you today?” my husband nervously asked as I measured flour into a bowl amid the remains of our dinner dishes and the two-foot spread of ripening tomatoes on our countertop. Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Bread is one of his favorites, but he had fallen victim to some of my ridiculousness today and was clearly afraid I would regress.
“Nope. This is therapy right now.”
Cooking calms me and clears my mind, particularly when I can cook alone in a quiet kitchen. Me and the radio. Darkness in the window. No hurry, no deadline. Ahhhh. I felt like I could breathe again. It’s a blessing to me, that a productive activity can be such a tranquil relief at the same time.
Plus, this is really good bread. The chocolate chips make it feel special and like a treat, but because of the pumpkin, you can eat it for breakfast and feel just right, too. It’s moist, with just the right hint of cinnamon. We can’t keep ourselves from slicing off a “little” chunk before it’s even cooled.
Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Bread
(from Taste of Home magazine)
makes 2 loaves
3 c. all-purpose flour
2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. baking soda
2 c. sugar
2 c. canned pumpkin puree
1 1/2 c. vegetable oil
1 1/2 c. semisweet chocolate chips
In a large bowl, combine the flour, cinnamon, salt and baking soda. In another bowl, beat the eggs, sugar, pumpkin and oil. Stir into dry ingredients until just moistened. Fold in the chocolate chips.
Pour into two greased 8x4x2″ loaf pans. Bake at 350 for 60-70 minutes or until a pick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pans to wire racks.
P.S. I’d suggest using less oil, subbing partially with unsweetened applesauce instead. I think the bread could stand up to the change, but I’m afraid to try it lest my husband revolt. I am telling you, he loves this bread enough to actually notice a change like that!