Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Pumpkin Ale Bread, Spooktacular Wreath and all things spice

With the season of all things pumpkin, apple, cinnamon and spice upon us I just had to jump on the bandwagon...and I may as well do it with a bang!  Double Whammy! A wicked Fall recipe, AND a quick-n-easy Fall craft! (I love whammies!) haha  Some of my favorite flavours are the above... pure addicting really.  These days just about anything comes in "pumpkin" during the fall season.  Including craft beers - YUM YUM.  I think last year.. we had tried at least 4 different varieties, and by far, our favorite was - and still is - St. Ambroise Pumpkin Ale.  SOOOO one night, when my honey happened to be working late in the shop... with the Pumpkin Ale just BEGGING to be opened...what the heck..why not play a little in the kitchen! Pumpkin Ale Bread was the result. (and of course...with the recipe calling for only a cup.. the remaining was enjoyed...thoroughly... by Yours Truly. *teehee*

Think PUMPKIN, Think SPICE, think that refreshing - albeit slightly bitter beer flavour packed into a dense and moist bread - drizzled with cinnamon spiced glazed.  YUP.  went along quite well with the Pumpkin Ale.... OH and with a coffee the next morning.... pretty much, it's just plain old Autumn Harvest in a sweet slice of bread. It's easy too! Of course, I couldn't just stop there, I like to jump right into the Season's...and after what I thought was a "cute find" on Pinterest, I had to try one for myself. If you are someone like me, who has a collection of scrap novelty fabric tucked away in every nook and cranny.... it's cheap! (If not, head on over to your local fabric store...this time of year, there's always bound to be some Halloween Fabric themed fabric on sale!  Here's the end result:

Let's start with the wreath.  Full instructions can be found here.  I may be a little dorky, but even I'm impressed witht the end results.  It's already hanging above our fireplace!  Gotta love Pinterest finds!  Here's my cliff notes on how to make a SPOOKTACULAR Wreath!:

 Wire wreath forms, I found at our local craft store...  about 2 yards of Halloween Fabric cut into 1 inch strips about 6 inches long. Working your way along each wire along the wreath, tire the fabric (I double knotted) until you've got the wreath covered and looking full.  Foam Ghost, and pre-painted letters from the craft store hot glued onto the wreath finished it off!!  SEEE!!! Simple!

ANNNND for the Fall recipe - again, another easy peasy find.
Pumpkin Ale Bread

  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup pumpkin ale
  • *optional - 1/2 cup pecans or dark chocolate chips if you'd like!
  • Glaze - icing sugar/milk seasoned with cinnamon to taste, and desired thickness

- Preheat oven to 350F, grease a 9" loaf pan.
- Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt in a large bowl
- Melt butter in a medium saucepan over low heat.  Remove from heat, stir in pumpkin, brown sugar. Mix well.
- Stir in eggs and then pumpkin ale.

- Add the pumpkin mixture to the dry ingredients and stir until just combined. If adding *optional* ingredients, fold in now. (pecans, chocolate chips etc)

- Pour batter to the greased loaf pan, and bake @ 350F for about an hour, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the loaf comes out clean. 

- Let cool slightly, and then drizzle glaze over top of loaf.  Slice and serve!!

So, between the Pumpkin Ale... Pumpkin Ale Bread ANNNNNDDDD Spooktacular Wreath... its been a pretty creative start to October in my household!  I like it!  hmmm...  next up... I'm thinking apples...spice...ooey-gooey something.....  Stay tuned!  We've got a whole month of Autumn Harvest to play with!!