Cardamom Spice Vegan Pumpkin Bread
The goal was to have this recipe up by Thanksgiving. Lets just say this recipe is good enough to make 365 days a year even though I missed my opportunity to get it up during prime gourd time. I've been baking this recipe for 3 years. A wink and a nod to my vegan friends, who are always thankful for spiced baked bread.
I promise NO ONE will guess its vegan. Coconut milk, moist pumpkin, and flax are seamless replacement for the binding and flavor of butter and eggs. Cardamom and ginger give it unforgettable flavor. The recipe's only rival is my lemon zucchini bread. I used my homemade pumpkin puree, which isn't any better then store bought. You can also use pureed butternut squash or yams, or a mixture. My favorite results were with half parsnip half yam puree. Pumpkin seeds are pretty on top, but fanned apple slices are a nice touch too. The recipe is based on the Post Punk Kitchen's version.
Vegan Pumpkin Bread
2 1/2 cups sugar
1 tblsp molasses
1 cup vegetable oil
2/3 cup coconut milk
(do not buy sweetened coconut milk often advertised for pina coladas)
1/4 cup ground flax meal
2 cups pumpkin puree
*16-20 cardamom pods
2 tsp ginger powdered
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground cloves
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
3 1/4 cups all-purpose flour (I use 1 1/2 cups whole wheat and 2 cups unbleached white flour)
*Note: Cardamom pods can be found at Indian grocery stores or ordered online from spice stores. I don't suggest substituting less flavorful powdered cardamom. Instead increase ginger by 1/2 tsp.
Preheat oven to 350.
Lightly coat 2 bread pans with oil. Drop in 1-2 tablespoons of flour into a bread pan. Shake and knock around until all surfaces are coated. Shake excess flour into the second bread pan, and repeat.
Separate shells from seeds. Carefully chop up cardamom seeds until medium-fine. They kind of pop and roll when you chop the hard seeds.
Meanwhile blend oil, sugar, and molasses for 1-2 minutes until combined with a standing or handheld mixer. Open the can of coconut milk and measure out 2/3 cups of the thick white cream. Leave the clear coconut water for another purpose. Add coconut to sugar along with pumpkin puree, flax, spices, salt, and baking soda. Mix another minute or more until blended. Add half of the flour and mix until mostly combined. Add remaining flour, and mix by hand. Be careful to mix as little as possible to prevent bread from getting tough.
Divide into 2 prepared loaf pans. Bake until a knife comes out clean 70-90 minutes. The bread will be golden brown. Let cool for 10 minutes in the pan before turning on to racks. Cool for another 20-30 minutes before serving. This bread freezes well wrapped in foil and placed in a ziplock. Eat one now, and save one for unexpected craving for pumpkin bread! I have those.