sugar 1 1/2 cups
pumpkin puree 1 cup
nut oil 1/2 cup (such as walnut or almond or sunflower seed oil)
all-purpose flour 1 3/4 cups
baking soda 1 tsp.
baking powder 1/2 tsp.
salt 1/2 tsp.
ground cinnamon 1/2 tsp.
ground cloves 1/2 tsp.
freshly grated nutmeg 1/2 tsp.
coarsely chopped pitted dates 1 cup (that can be the dried kind)
- Preheat an oven to 350°F. Grease a 9-by-5-inch loaf pan or spray with nonstick cooking spray.
- In a bowl, whisk together the sugar, pumpkin puree, eggs and oil until smooth, about 1 minute.
- In another bowl, stir together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, cloves and nutmeg.
- Add the flour mixture to the pumpkin mixture and beat until smooth and well combined, 1 to 2 minutes. The batter will be thick.
- Using a large rubber spatula, fold in the dates just until evenly distributed, no more than a few strokes. Do not overmix. Spoon the batter into the prepared pan.
- Bake until the top is browned and crusty and develops a long center crack, 60 to 70 minutes. A toothpick inserted into the center of the loaf should come out clean.
- Transfer the pan to a wire rack and let cool for 10 minutes. Unmold the loaf onto the rack and let cool completely.
- Serve at room temperature, cut into thick slices. Makes one 9-by-5-inch loaf.
Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Collection Series, Muffins, by Beth Hensperger (Simon & Schuster, 2003).
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