This week, I’ve decided, out of the kindness of my little heart, to share with you one of my most-treasured recipes.  It’s one I’ve enjoyed for as long as I can remember, and have never tasted its equal.  It is one of my very favorite harbingers of fall and the holiday season—my mom’s pumpkin bread.  I’m sure, unless you’ve been living a seriously deprived life, you’ve had pumpkin bread before, but this is the best I’ve ever had.  Dense, moist, spicy, and sweet, this loaf turns out soft and smooth on the inside, and nearly crisp and slightly chewy on top.  While I usually try to put a healthy spin on my recipes, this time I’m throwing caution to the crisp, autumn wind… I mean, it’s (almost) the holidays, right?

Here’s what you’ll need:

3 eggs

3 c. sugar

1 c. canola or vegetable oil

1 15-oz. can pure pumpkin (not pumpkin pie filling)

1 t. vanilla

3 c. all-purpose flour

1 t. salt

1 t. cinnamon

1 t. nutmeg

1 t. allspice

1 t. baking soda

½ t. baking powder

Baker’s spray, or butter and flour for the pans (I use two 8×4 loaf pans)

First, preheat the oven to 350° and grease your pans with baker’s spray or a light coating of butter and a dusting of flour.

In a small bowl, mix together the flour, salt, spices, baking soda and powder.  Then, mix together the eggs, sugar, oil, and pumpkin in a large bowl until fully combined.  Once the wet ingredients are combined and smooth, slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet, being sure to scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl.

When the batter is smooth and fully mixed, divide the batter between your pans.  Lift each pan a few inches from the counter top and give them a couple good bangs on the counter to release air bubbles.

Bake for 45-50 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center of the loaf comes out clean.

This bread makes a great holiday gift and does well in smaller, individual-sized loaves as well.

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