Halloween isn’t really a thing in Australia, but I’d happily adopt it just for the pumpkins! Who needs lollies and chocolate when you can have pumpkin, right!? (I’m predicting some eye rolls there, but I’m OK with that).
I’m about halfway through my overseas trip as I write this from Germany. I’ve also been to Austria, Hungary and Czech Republic so far and one thing I’m loving is the adorable pumpkins everywhere! I really want to take some of the cute little ones home to Australia, but at the same time I don’t want to end up featuring on Border Security.
Not only is the pumpkin one of the cutest vegetables, I think it’s also one of the yummiest and most versatile. It’s the whole package; the one you’d take home to meet Grandma. It really can do anything. I’ve done pumpkin mac n’ cheese, pumpkin dip and even pumpkin mud cake, and it’s rose to the occasion every time. One of my most frequently made pumpkin recipes is this Spiced Pumpkin Loaf, because it’s super easy and there’s the added bonus of having an extra loaf for later or to give to a friend.
I’m thinking I’ll sit down with a piece of this pumpkin loaf and a cup of tea on the evening of October 31st and enjoy the serenity, without the sugar-crazed kids knocking on my door. Just me and my pumpkins. It might be even better than Halloween.
PS. The photos of the pumpkins were taken by me in Vienna with my iPhone, hence them not living up to Soph’s mad skills!
Spiced Pumpkin Loaf
Makes two loaves (great for freezing one for later!)
- 1 butternut pumpkin
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup olive oil (mild flavour)
- 3 eggs
- 3 cups plain flour
- 1 tsp ground ginger
- 1 tsp ground cloves
- 3 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1 tsp nutmeg
- 1 tsp baking/bicarb soda
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- Pepitas (or your favourite nuts/seeds) to garnish
Preheat the oven to 180C. Grease two loaf tins (about 22cm by 12cm) and line the bases with baking paper.
Cut the pumpkin lengthways and scrape out the seeds. Place cut side up on a baking tray and bake until soft enough to mash (about an hour). Allow to cool before scraping the flesh away from the skin. Mash with a fork (some lumps are absolutely fine). Weigh out 450g and set aside.
Beat sugar and oil in a large bowl with a whisk, until well-combined. Whisk in eggs and then pumpkin.
Sift the dry ingredients into a bowl. Add the dry ingredients to the wet mixture, one half at a time, folding with a wooden spoon until combined.
Divide the mixture between the two loaf tins. Sprinkle with pepitas. Bake for about one hour, or until a skewer comes out clean.
I like to eat this loaf warm with some butter and a cup of tea.