I Love Desserts


Pumpkin Spice Bread

Makes 12 large slices


This spicy bread, moist with pumpkin and plump raisins, captures the color and flavor of autumn in every bite. Spread slices with softened cream cheese for a satisfying accompaniment to coffee or tea.


Solid vegetable shortening,
   at room temperature, for greasing
2-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter,
   melted and cooled slightly
2 cups firmly packed light brown sugar
2 large eggs, at room temperature
1-1/2 cups canned pumpkin purée
1 cup raisins


1. Position an oven rack so that the bread will bake in the middle of the oven and preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Using a pastry brush, grease the bottom and sides of a 9-by-5-inch loaf pan with shortening. Line the bottom of the pan with kitchen parchment. Set aside.

2. In a bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, cloves, and nutmeg. Whisk to mix well and set aside.

3. In another bowl, combine the butter, brown sugar, eggs, and pumpkin purée and mix until well blended. Add the flour mixture, about 1 cup at a time, and mix gently just until incorporated. Stir in the raisins. Scrape the batter into the prepared pan.

4. Transfer the pan to the oven and bake until a wooden skewer inserted into the center of the bread comes out clean, about 1 hour and 15 minutes.

5. Remove the pan to a wire rack and set aside to cool completely.

6. When the bread has cooled, run the blade of a thin, flexible metal spatula or knife all around the sides of the bread to loosen it from the pan. Place one of your hands on top of the bread, invert the pan with both hands, lift off the pan, and peel off the parchment.

Wrap the bread tightly in plastic wrap and store at room temperature overnight (for better flavor and easier slicing) or for up to 1 week. Slice into 12 equal slices just before serving.

Buy the Book!


Afternoon Delights
Coffeehouse Favorites:
Cookies, Coffee Cake, Brownies,
Bars, Scones and More

By James McNair & Andrew Moore
Chronicle Books, 2001
Hardback, $ 17.95
Color photographs throughout
ISBN: 0-8118-2996-0
Recipe reprinted by permission.


Afternoon Delights



This page created October 2001

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