Oofta it’s been a long couple of weeks! I have to give a big thank you to Charissa for holding up the blog basically all by herself recently! I always seem to procrastinate right up until the time when I should be spending my time studying for finals. Needless to say I have been living in the library this past month! I’m sure quite a few of you know what I mean. So as I took that long-awaited breath of freedom today I thought about what yummy treat I could make myself to celebrate the end of my semester.
My reward definitely needed to be something with a holiday touch considering I haven’t had a chance to properly get into the Christmas mood yet. Cookies? Ha! With my oven, yeah right. I have literally tried everything but I just cannot get used to baking cookies in an electric oven. I bought an oven thermometer and I am fairly certain that the temperature fluctuates quite a bit during cooking. While home over Thanksgiving I made some delicious chocolate chip cookies so I absolutely refuse to believe that it is my fault 🙂
Anyway back to the brainstorming! I reeaallly was in the mood for gingerbread men because it had been so long since I’ve had one! So how can I enjoy Gingy’s flavor without wasting my time trying to adjust my oven? The answer was so easy it was staring me in the face, gingerbread men… ginger… BREAD… men. Why not make a loaf of gingery goodness?! But let’s not stop there, throw in some pumpkin and cranberries and you’ve got yourself a holiday bread worth sharing with the family!
A few notes before we get started. You will be tempted to take the bread out of the oven before the hour is up but don’t do it! Trust the time recommendation or you will end up with a very dense loaf of bread.
Also you should beware, the smell of this bread will make you so giddy for Christmas that you might be tempted to wrap it up and put it under your tree, only to rip the paper open seconds later and yell Merry Christmas!!
Pumpkin Cranberry Gingerbread
- 1 Flax Egg (1 Tbs. Ground Flax + 3 Tbs. Water)
- 1 tsp Cinnamon
- 1 tsp Baking Soda
- ½ tsp each Ginger, Allspice, Salt, Baking Powder
- ¼ tsp each Ground Cloves & Nutmeg
- 1 cup Wheat Pastry Flour
- 1 cup All Purpose Flour
- 1/3 cup Lite Silken Tofu
- ½ cup Canned Pumpkin
- ¼ cup Molasses
- ¼ cup Stevia (Cup-for-Cup Powder Version)
- 1 tsp Vanilla
- 1 cup Hot Water
- ¾ cup Fresh Cranberries
- ¼ cup Dried Cranberries
Preheat the oven to 350 and prepare the flax egg. Combine the spices with the baking powder and soda, salt, and flour. In a separate bowl mash the silken tofu until there are no chunks then add the pumpkin puree. Next mix in the molasses, flax egg, stevia, and vanilla. Once all the wet ingredients are combined add ½ cup of hot water and stir. Gradually stir half of the flour mixture into the wet ingredients. Then alternate stirring in the last ½ cup of hot water and the rest of the flour mixture. Lastly fold in the cranberries and scoop the dough into a lightly greased 9x5in baking pan. Bake for 1 hour. Cool for 5 minutes in the bread pan then transfer to a wire cooling rack to cool completely.
* This would also be delicious with some toasted walnuts or pecans.
* I recommend refrigerating or freezing this bread because of the high moisture content.
This is what the tofu+pumpkin mixture should look like before adding the remaining ingredients. I know it looks gorgeous! Another quick note, it is important that you use lite silken tofu in this recipe. It is in there to replace the oil and if you use regular block tofu your results will be much different!
This bread is very yummy with Trader Joe’s Pumpkin Butter! (Thanks to my family for sending it to me in a care package!) If you don’t have pumpkin butter regular vegan butter is delish as well, or you could get creative and slather on some pb or jam!
What is your favorite holiday treat?