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Low-Fat Pumpkin Spice Bread: FAIL

pumpkin bead FAIL
Fallen Pumpkin Spice Bread

So I was in a particularly domestic mood this Sunday and thought it would be really nice to get the house smelling all yummy by baking.  Now, for those of you who don't know me, baking is sort of my nemesis.  Actually, it's like one of those popular girls who just doesn't like you even though you really like her.  I like to bake, I just suck at it.  Always and consistently suck.  But no matter how many fails I experience, I just can't give up.  Enter yesterday's Pumpkin Spice Bread FAIL.

So here's the recipe I used:

2 Cups Unbleached Flour
1 Cup Brown Sugar, Packed***
1 TBSP Baking Powder***
2 tsp Cinnamon
1/2 tsp Nutmeg
1/4 tsp Baking Soda
1/4 tsp Ground Ginger
1/4 tsp Cloves
1 15oz can Pumpkin Puree
1/2 Cup Milk
2 Egg Whites, Whipped***
1/3 Cup Fat-free Sour Cream

Preheat 350 and spray a 5" x 9" loaf pan with cooking spray and set aside.

Combine Flour, Sugar, Baking Powder, Baking Soda, and Spices in a large mixing bowl. ***So perhaps I already set myself up for failure here.  I used 1 tsp baking powder because I couldn't believe a quick bread recipe would actually require 1 TBSP.  I checked through all my other recipes and they were consistently at 1 tsp, so I modified assuming it was a typo.  AND I didn't have brown sugar OR molasses, so I just used granulated.

In a medium mixing bowl, combine pumpkin, milk, sour cream, and eggs. *** And since I didn't care if each slice had a single gram of fat, I used whole eggs instead of whites.  Fail set-up number 2?

Spoon pumpkin mixture into dry ingredients and mix just until moist. 

Pour into pan and bake for 60 minutes.

Now, my oven is possessed by the slow-food movement.  It does not keep a consistent temperature (always 20-30 degrees low), but knowing this I check it regularly and re-set when necessary (which is every time I check). 

My bread is baking away, smelling all good and yummy, puffing up like bread should. In short, looking like I may actually succeed.  Since it seemed a bit un-done at 60 minutes, I left it in for another 10.  And then another 10.  And then took it out and dumped it on a cooling rack,
 where it deflated like a day-old latex balloon.  That sucker was not done after 80 minutes!!!  What the heck?  After cutting it, a custard like bread interior was revealed.  I think it was actually cooked through, but the texture was much more like custard than bread. Where the heck did I go wrong?  Was it the egg or the sugar that did my concoction in?  Any baking guru's advice would be much appreciated, as it would be nice to know how to right this run-away train wreck of a disaster.  Also, a better recipe would be welcomed as this one landed in the chiminea last night. :)

Custard Bread?  Um, Yuck.


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