Cranberry-Walnut Pumpkin Loaves

Total Time
24hrs 55mins
Prep
24 hrs
Cook
55 mins

I love, love, love this bread! The ingredients may seem sweet to you, but it really isn't. It's a little spicy, a little sweet, a little savory. I made my first batch when I was pregnant, ate one entire loaf right out of the oven, and then started another batch that same day so I wouldn't run out! I couldn't stop eating it, it's that good. It does require some long rising times, but the actual work you put into it is minimal. You need to allow 2 full days to make this bread. You will be rewarded, though - it's incredible. From Baking with Julia, my favorite baking book...

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Ingredients

Nutrition

Directions

  1. Note: This bread has an overnight rise.
  2. [b]Mixingand Kneading[/b]: whisk 2 2/3 cup flour with the cinnamon, nutmeg and salt.
  3. Set aside.
  4. Sprinkle the yeast on the water and allow to bloom about 5 minutes.
  5. In a mixer with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugar on medium speed until light.
  6. Add the pumpkin and egg and beat until well blended.
  7. Don't be concerned if the mixture looks curdled.
  8. Set the mixer to low speed and add the yeast, then begin to add the dry ingredients about 1/2 cup at a time.
  9. As soon as the mixture starts to form a dough that comes together, scrape the paddle clean and switch to the dough hook.
  10. If your dough doesn't come together (it might be because the pumpkin had too much liquid) add a bit more flour, a tablespoon at a time, until it does.
  11. Mix and knead the dough on med-low spped for 10-15 minutes, scraping down the bowl and dough hook now and then.
  12. At the start, the dough will look more like a batter than a dough, but as you continue to work, it will develop into a soft, very sticky dough that will ball up on the hook.
  13. The dough develops much the way brioche does.
  14. With the machine on low speed, add the walnuts and raisins, mixing only until incorporated, about 1 minute.
  15. Add the cranberries and mix as little as possible to avoid crushing them, although some cranberries will pop and stain a patch of the dough red; think of this as charming and proceed.
  16. [b]FirstRise[/b]: scrape the dough into a lightly buttered large bowl, cover tightly with plastic wrap and set aside at room temperature to rise until nearly doubled- 2-3 hours.
  17. [b]Chillingthe dough[/b]: when the dough has doubled, fold it over on itself a couple of times to deflate it, wrap it tightly in plastic and refrigerate overnight.
  18. [b]Shapingthe dough[/b]: at least 6 hours before you want to begin baking, remove the dough from the refrigerator.
  19. Leave it covered, in its bowl, until it reaches at least 64 degrees F.
  20. on the insta-read thermometer.
  21. This will take as long as 3-4 hours- don't rush it.
  22. If you don't have an insta-read, look for the dough to be slightly cool and just a little spongy.
  23. Lightly butter 2 loaf pans.
  24. Working on a lightly floured surface, divide the dough in half and pat each piece of dough into a rectangle, keeping the short end facing you.
  25. Start at the top and roll the dough toward you and seal the seam by pressing it with your fingertips.
  26. Seal the ends, then place each roll in the pans, seams down.
  27. [b]SecondRise[/b]: cover the pans lightly with a kitchen towel and allow to rise at room temperature for 1 1/2 to 2 hours or until the dough has nearly doubled.
  28. It will rise to just above the rim of the pans.
  29. [b]Baking[/b]:preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  30. Bake about 50-55 minutes or until deep golden.
  31. Remove the pans to cooling racks.
  32. After resting 5 minutes, turn the loaves out of the pans to cool to room temp.
  33. The breads can be kept at room temperature for a day or two or frozen, wrapped airtight, for up to 1 month.
  34. Thaw, still wrapped, at room temp.
  35. NOTE 1: I have made this bread in small loaf pans and given them as gifts.
  36. They will bake in about 30 minutes if formed into the small loaves.
  37. NOTE 2: The rising times are approximate.
  38. They definitely rise on the longer side of the time-table, but whatever you do, dont' rush the rising.
  39. Give yourself 2 full days to make this.
  40. But- the result will be totally worth it.
Most Helpful

5 5

Petit Four, I love this bread, too!!! These loaves are delicious and so moist and tender from the pumpkin, with really a surprising final flavor that has just a bare hint of sweetness. I really enjoyed the tart explosions of the whole cranberries. As always, your directions are flawless.

5 5

I was going to post this recipe but it was already up! This is the best bread I've ever made. The texture is so soft and fluffy--it really is a lot like brioche. I had some difficulty mixing in the cranberries/walnuts/raisins, and I think the bread would be delicious even without these additions (if I had to pick one I would leave in either the cranberries or the raisins). I made one full-sized loaf and 6 large muffin-sized "loaves", and I must say I actually prefer the muffins and would likely make them all this way next time. Great recipe from a great book (if you don't have Baking with Julia you should definitely get it!). Thanks for posting so I don't have to!

4 5

Delicious. I was having a hard time with rising but my kitchen was very cold. Very different yet very good bread. DH had some toasted and said YUM. Made for Iron Chef SI Cranberries