Sunday, September 14, 2014

Fall Baking With Kids - Montessori Practical Life

Wait for it.... Wait for it....

IT'S FINALLY FALL!!!!

Okay, so I might be a little premature to call it Fall in the South, but the last part of last week, it sure felt like it! :)

Fall = BAKING


LM made her first ever solo batch of Pumpkin Bread.

This recipe is one that I can't say was handed down through the family with tons of secret, special ingredients. I will say, though, that it was a favorite growing up, and the tradition continues in my home now, with my children growing up loving it. It was also greatly associated with Fall, Thanksgiving, and Christmas time.

The recipe is so simple and easy to follow - you'll have great smells filling your house in under an hour!


You'll need:

3 cups sugar
1 cup oil
4 eggs, beaten
16 ounces pumpkin (canned or fresh!)
3 1/2 cups flour
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 tsp ginger (not ale - typo in cookbook!)
1 tsp nutmeg
1 tsp allspice
1/2 tsp ground cloves
1 tsp cinnamon
2/3 cup hot water


Oh, and one handy helper!


First, cream sugar and oil - this is where a KitchenAid Mixer is going to come in real handy, so you can mix, measure, and pour all at the same time!



After sugar and oil have creamed, add eggs.




Then, add your pumpkin. We cheated and used canned pumpkin, but if you have fresh, feel free to use it! Confession - I've never tried it with fresh. It must be good, though!


Next, in a separate bowl, add dry ingredients - flour, salt, baking powder, and spices. 



Sift dry ingredients together, then add to pumpkin mix alternately with the hot water. 


When that's all in your mixer, and if you do have a wonderful KitchenAid, let it mix while you clean up what you have used and get ready for the oven.


Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.


I love my Pampered Chef mini loaf pans, but you can use any style of mini loaf pans you have. I highly recommend the mini loaves, versus the full loaf - it's less baking time and less chance of a slightly over-cooked bottom. Or, you can mix it up and make muffins or make it all at once, cake style. Just remember to adjust your baking times accordingly.


After spraying your baking dish well with non-stick spray, carefully fill at least halfway, though no more than 2/3 full. Be careful to make sure they are even, of course!


We like to sprinkle the tops with a little cinnamon sugar. It gives the bread a nice, sweet crunch :) .


Place in the oven, and set a timer for 30 minutes. At this point, check your bread. When the top is cracked and no longer looks wet, you'll know it's finished. With my mini-loaf pan, we actually bake ours for about 35 minutes. Just keep an eye on it and use good judgement from the 30 minute marker until you know it is finished. Another good way to check is the tried and true toothpick-in-the-center method.


After that, all that's left to do is.... 


ENJOY!

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