You’ll fall in love with this bread. It makes great turkey sandwiches and is a great side for butternut squash or pumpkin soups. Chop it up into small cubes and stale it out in the oven to make wonderful croutons for soup.
- 2 1/2 cups unbleached bread flour (non-bromated)
- 2 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
- 1/4 teaspoon yeast (quarter of a packet, if using packets)
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 1/4 cups whey (from making strained Greek yogurt or Yo-Cheese)
- 1 can (15 oz.) Calabaza pumpkin puree
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon powder
- 1 teaspoon ginger powder
- 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
- 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1 cup pecan pieces
- 1 cup dried cranberries (not pictured, they missed the photo shoot)
In a large bowl combine flour, yeast and salt, spices, pecan pieces and dried cranberries. In a separate bowl, whisk together the pumpkin puree and whey. Add to dry ingredients.
Stir until blended. The dough will be a bit rough and sticky.
Cover bowl with plastic cover or plastic wrap. Let dough rest at least 12 to 18 hours at room temperature. (Our house is around 76 degrees. Around 70 degrees is considered optimal.)
Dough is ready when bread has more than doubled in size and bubbles will appear on top.
Lightly flour a work surface and place dough on it.
Sprinkle it with a little more flour and fold it over on itself once or twice.
Cover loosely with plastic wrap and let rest about 15 minutes.
Using just enough flour to keep dough from sticking to work surface or to your fingers, gently and quickly shape dough into a ball.
Generously coat a cotton towel (not terry cloth) with flour or cornmeal; put dough seam side down on towel and dust with more flour or cornmeal.
Return dough and towel to clean bowl (it’ll help keep its shape) and cover with another cotton towel and let rise for about 2 hours.
When it is ready, dough will be more than double in size and will not readily spring back when poked with a finger.
About half an hour before dough is ready, heat oven to 450 degrees. Put a 6 to 8 quart heavy covered pot (cast iron, enamel, Pyrex or ceramic) in oven as it heats. I use cast iron and lightly coat the inside with shortening, just enough for a shiny patina and add a light sprinkling of kosher salt.
When dough is ready, carefully remove pot from oven. Remove towel from top of dough and turn dough into pot, seam side up. Shake pan once or twice if dough is unevenly distributed; it will straighten out as it bakes.
Cover with lid and bake 30 minutes, then remove lid and bake for approximately another 15 to 30 minutes, until loaf is beautifully browned.
Remove from pan and cool on rack.
When cooled, cut a slice and spread some of the Ginger and Honey Yo-cheese on it and then top with a dollop of my cranberries. Heaven!
Tonight I used the bread to make open-faced turkey, bacon and warm Gruyere cheese sandwiches that were topped of with my cranberries. I melted the Gruyere cheese under the broiler on top of the bread, then placed a couple strips of bacon on top, then a couple slices of turkey, then a dollop of my cranberries. Again, Heaven!