Sunday, March 5, 2017

Ultimate pumpkin chocolate chip bread

If you need a go-to pumpkin bread to bake for friends and family, look no further. This ultimate pumpkin chocolate chip bread is extremely soft, fluffy and perfectly moist. Everyone will ask you for the recipe!

My coworker Amanda is an alumni of my school's most hated rival. Now if you're not familiar with sports, I'm not talking about having a strong dislike against students of this school. This is the type of rivalry that tears families apart. It's not uncommon to hear my fellow fans boo and hiss upon hearing the name of the other school. Yup, this school rivalry runs deep, and it definitely continues beyond the college years.

Despite having attended rival colleges, Amanda and I get along really well. In fact, we don't hold anything against each other. We sit next to each other at work and generally have a good time together.

One fall day, Amanda brought in some pumpkin chocolate chip bread. She explained to me that she only bakes this once a year and makes several loaves to share with her church friends, family and coworkers. Intrigued, I took a slice and immediately was smitten.

This bread was so soft and fluffy that it practically melted in my mouth. The added chocolate chips were a bonus. I casually asked Amanda if she would be willing to share the recipe, and do you know what she told me? She said that she doesn't share the recipe and gets asked about it every year. But, she would make an exception and share it with me. School rivalry? Not here.

I took Amanda's basic recipe and made some slight alterations to better suit my family's tastes and health needs. I still think it tastes just as good as her version, maybe even slightly better. Just don't tell her that or else she might decide to hold that against me after all. :) 

Ultimate pumpkin chocolate chip bread
  • 1 and 3/4 cups all-purpose flour (can substitute half or all of it for white whole wheat if you want to make this healthier)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg 
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 can pumpkin puree
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup chocolate chips
Directions
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. Generously grease or line a standard 9"x5" loaf pan and set aside.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, nutmeg, cinnamon, sugar and salt together and set aside.

In a medium sized bowl, mix together the pumpkin, eggs, applesauce, water and vanilla. Transfer this to the large bowl with the dry ingredients and stir until a few dry streaks remain. Fold in the chocolate chips until everything just comes together - do not over mix.

Bake in your preheated oven for 50-60 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Bread should be stored in an airtight container at room temperature or in the refrigerator and will keep for several days. It can also be frozen and thawed.

Yield: One 9"x5" loaf; about 8-12 servings

Source: Slightly adapted from my coworker Amanda

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