Pumpkin Bread with Mexican Vanilla, by Beverly Hicks Burch

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Nothing says comfort and home like fresh bread baking in the oven.

In days gone by that meant a lot of rising, kneading, more rising, more kneading and a whole lot of waiting. But, the pay off was always worth it. It’s a little easier these days with a bread machine.

My Tall & Handsome loves fresh baked bread. And, if confession is good for the soul, so do I.

I know “gluten – free” diets are the new fad. I’m not making light of people with celiac disease or wheat allergy because it is a serious disorder. But, as with anything else we Americans tend to think “less” is more and in this case surely less gluten must be better.

Many knowledgeable and respectable nutritionist and healthcare professionals will tell you avoiding gluten is unnecessary if you don’t have celiac disease or wheat intolerance. It is a case of the food industry jumping on a band wagon to make big $$$. And, by omitting gluten you are stripping important nutrients from you diet: fiber, iron, folate, niacin, calcium, B-12, Zinc and others which gluten replacement grains lack.

As someone with autoimmune disorders accompanied by gastrointestinal problems, several years ago I was tested for celiac disorder. I would have gladly accepted it if it would have improved my health. But, my tests were negative and instead my problems are rooted in something more serious.

So, why complicate things by adding something I don’t have, right?

Plus, I would miss wonderful recipes like today’s that are packed with wonderful healthy, tasty ingredients like pumpkin.

Pumpkin is just so right for this time of the year – Thanksgiving and Christmas. And, it’s a storehouse of wonderful fiber, anti-oxidants, minerals and vitamins like A, C and E.

So, enjoy a warm, healthy slice of Pumpkin Bread with Mexican Vanilla with a cup of your favorite hot beverage.

Pumpkin Bread with Mexican Vanilla

3 cups bread flour

2 – 1/4 teaspoon bread machine yeast

1/4 cup white sugar

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1 – 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

2 tablespoons soften butter

3/4 cup pumpkin puree

1/2 cup water

1 – 1/2 teaspoon Mexican vanilla

1. Combine flour, yeast, sugar, pumpkin, cinnamon, salt, butter, spice, water and Mexican vanilla in the order recommended.

2. Select the Sweet or Basic/White cycle for 1 –1/2 pound size using the light crust setting. Start the machine.

3. When the bread is finished baking remove from pan and cool on a rack. Slice as needed.

*Serve warm with a tad of soft butter and drizzled with locally grown honey. We get ours from William’s Orchard in Argo, AL. The bread is also excellent toasted. Also, don’t be afraid to venture out and make a turkey sandwich with this heavenly bread! That is on T & H’s culinary bucket list.

Enjoy!!

Pumpkin Bread with Mexican Vanilla - Loaf

Fresh out of the bread machine

Pumpkin Bread with Mexican Vanilla sliced

Waiting for honey

© 2014 Beverly Hicks Burch All Rights Reserved.

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