I do not like to cook.
For a hundred and seven reasons, I do not like to cook. Right up there in the top 5 reasons, is this: I am no good at it.
No, really. It’s true.
Just a few short months ago, I tried to make breakfast for my Sunday School class. O. Disaster. It’s a wonder any of them are still alive.
I rarely get nervous doing anything; yet cooking makes me so insanely nervous. It’s odd, I know; but, then, so am I.
Combine being nervous with a brain that goes a million miles a minute, 24/7–well, cooking just isn’t for me.
But–here’s the thing–each year, I buy canned pumpkin. Every. Single. Year.
Isn’t that the craziest thing? I even know that I’m not going to do a blasted thing with the pumpkin; I just buy it because, well, shouldn’t I do something with pumpkin, in November? Shouldn’t everyone?
Marketing has beat my soul, in the realm of pumpkin purchasing.
And this year is no different. In fact, this year may be worse, because I read a news article that said there might be a Canned Pumpkin Shortage this year.
Cue panic. I bought four cans. Two Extra Large. For Extra Large Pumpkin Stuff that I Am Not Going To Bake. (Oh, and for the record, I went to the store today, and they still have pumpkin. Looks like that Run On Pumpkin Prediction turned out to be false, just like that whole Y2K thing.)
Truly, I am ridiculous.
I probably should try to craft some marvelous, life lesson from this, and shape it into a pumpkin-spice analogy or metaphor now, but I refuse to.
One: I dislike analogies. And metaphors.
Two: There is no great life lesson to be learned here.
On with the story–I bought the pumpkins-in-can, and placed them in my pantry, fully expecting to donate them, or give them to friends, or (complete honest here, don’t judge) throw them out once they expired.
And, then, I found it.
A recipe for Pumpkin Bread In The Crockpot.
Now, here’s the thing–I can do Crockpot fairly well. There is something beautiful about dumping a bunch of cans of stuff into a crockpot, letting it sit for 8 hours, and then having food magically spring forth, ready to be eaten. It’s easy. It doesn’t involve figuring out what to do with a chicken. Or how long to “simmer” something. Shoot, I barely even have to measure, and I don’t have to babysit it. My kind of cooking.
So, this caught my eye, this Pumpkin-Bread-In-A-Crockpot Magic.
Also–well, there is a geeky element to it. I had no idea that BREAD could be made in a CROCKPOT. That is scientifically fascinating, plus, well—it’s BREAD. What’s not to love about carbohydrates, no matter what method is used to heat their molecules to the point of forming that yummy yeasty, carby- goodness?
I. Had. To. Try. It.
It is AMAZING (and yes, I am shouting at you). Amazing. So good. So good. So good.
And so easy.
I don’t even measure the salt, spices or baking powder, because I have no idea where my measuring spoons are. I just pour some in, and every time it tastes right. How tremendous is that??
So, here it is. I’m sharing it with you, because you have to try it. You have to. And, let’s be honest, I won’t be making you any (Does the word “Hospitality” and “Shelly” come to mind when you think of me? No? Yeah, me either. #FAIL), so you are going to have to make yourself a loaf.
So, below is the recipe. And be sure to read my tips, below the recipe, because I’m a PRO now. Try it out. Spread some butter on it–the good stuff–and sprinkle some powdered sugar on top.
Crockpot Pumpkin Bread
- ½ cup of oil
- ½ cup of sugar
- ½ cup of packed brown sugar
- 2 eggs (beaten)
- 1 15oz can of pumpkin
- 1½ cup of flour (sifted)
- ¼ tsp. of salt
- ½ tsp. of cinnamon
- ½ tsp. of nutmeg
- 1 tsp. of baking soda
(eh….those last 4–like I said above, just shake some in and you are good to go, if you’ve lost your measuring spoons. Trust me.)
- Blend the oil and both of the sugars into a large bowl.
- Then, stir in the beaten eggs and canned pumpkin. Add the remaining dry ingredients and mix thoroughly.
- Pour the batter into a greased or oiled bread pan. (I used an oil spray that worked just fine.)
- Now add two cups of water to your crockpot and place the pan into a crock pot.
- Cover the top of the crockpot with eight-ten paper towels. This is to trap condensation and keep the bread from becoming mushy.
- Place the crock pot lid on top of the crockpot (I tried to make sure the paper towels were trapped around the lid so they didn’t slip) and bake on high 2½ to 3 hours.
Shelly’s Tremendous Tips
- Ok, see, essentially, you are cooking your little loaf of bread in a warm bath of water. So, pour some water into the crockpot first. Two cups might not do it. I have a large crockpot, so I use about 4 cups of water. (Oh, that reminds me, you also need to make sure you have a loaf pan, that will actually fit into your crockpot. If not, go buy a bigger crockpot. It’s worth it.) Then pour your batter into your sprayed loaf pan, and settle your cherished creation into the water. Just make sure that you don’t use TOO much water; you don’t want the water to pour into the loaf pan, thus drowning your pumpkin goodiness. (See pic below)
- Here’s the fun part–the paper towels. I love paper towels, and now not only can you clean with them, you can COOK with them. Dole out about 15 (that’s more than the instructions, but TRUST ME), paper towels, in one big strip. Then just kind of fold it over and over again till you have a blanket for your pumpkin baby that is laying in its bath of what will soon be very warm water. The place those paper towels kind of on top of your Crock-Pot, so that when you put the lid on, you capture the edges in the lid. This way, they don’t fall down on top of the loaf, and you trap the condensation, helping it to cook. THIS IS WHAT MAKES IT SO YUMMY. Not dry. At all.
And there you have it.
Go forth. Make Pumpkin Bread.
‘Cause you know you want to.
And you know you won’t be getting any from me.