This bread is a welcome treat for breakfast, afternoon tea or for dessert (and is especially delicious served with sliced ripe pears). Since the recipe doubles perfectly, make two loaves. Be sure to bake one loaf for slicing, and stick another in the freezer for last minute occasions. You can also make tinier versions of this quick bread and give them as simple holiday gifts.
- 1 3/4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
- 1 Teaspoon baking powder
- 1 Teaspoon baking soda
- 1 1/2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
- 1/2 Teaspoon salt
- 1/2 Cup unsalted butter, softened
- 1 1/4 cups sugar
- 3 eggs
- 1 Cup canned pumpkin
- 1 Teaspoon vanilla extract
- 4 Ounces semi-sweet or bittersweet chocolate, cut into pieces
Step 1: Preheat the oven to 350 F. Butter and flour a 9-by-5-inch nonstick loaf pan.
Step 2: In a mixing bowl, combine 1 3/4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour, 1 teaspoon baking powder, 1 teaspoon baking soda, 1 1/2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Stir together.
Step 3: With an electric mixer, beat 1/2 cup unsalted butter until softened. Add 1 1/4 cups sugar and continue beating. Add 3 eggs and beat until well blended.
Step 4: Add 1 cup canned pumpkin, 1 teaspoon vanilla extract and the flour mixture, beating just until well blended.
Step 5: Over a double boiler on medium-high heat, melt 4 ounces semi-sweet or bittersweet chocolate (cut into pieces). Heat until totally melted, about 5 minutes. (Or melt in a glass bowl in the microwave for about 1 1/2 to 2 minutes, or until completely melted and smooth).
Step 6: Spoon half of the batter into the loaf pan. Drop spoonfuls of half of the chocolate mixture on top of the batter and then swirl the chocolate into the batter with a wooden skewer. Repeat with the remaining batter and chocolate, making sure to swirl the chocolate into the pumpkin well.
Step 7: Bake the loaf for about 1 hour or until a skewer comes out clean in the center. Let the loaf cool at least 15 minutes, and then invert onto a wire rack. Serve sliced warm or at room temperature.