Here we are in early October and the change of seasons is undeniable. The mornings are cooler … and darker … and the leaves are all beginning to change. Our CSA boxes are overflowing with a number of winter squash varieties and apples we’d never tried before. Life is good.
Time to fill the kitchen with the warm scents of fall … cinnamon, cloves, baking bread. After seeing so many blog recipes lately for pumpkin breads or other baked pumpkin goodies, I wondered if we could make something similar, but substitute acorn squash instead. After all, when you have eight of them on your counter, you need to get creative!
I turned to one of my favorite new cookbooks this year, Good to the Grain: Baking with Whole Grain Flours by Kim Boyce. If you are at all interested in expanding your baking skills to use alternative flours, I would highly recommend checking out this cookbook. She has a great recipe for Banana Cereal Muffins that I turned to for guidance in developing this recipe. In particular, the recipe includes whole grain rye flour which is remarkably softer, sweeter and more subtle than you might imagine. Nothing like what we’re accustomed to with dense loaves of pumpernickel or commercial rye breads.
The recipe also relies predominantly on overripe bananas and unsulphured molasses for its sweetness. A kiss of brown sugar rounds things out, but you could likely substitute honey or pure maple syrup.
In making the bread pictured here, I used acorn squash. I’m sure you could easily substitute with a number of other winter squashes like butternut, carnival, buttercup or pumpkin. And I probably went a little overboard with the apple bits in this one, but goodness, I love those little guys packed into each slice.
- 1 cup whole grain rye flour
- 1 cup unbleached bread flour
- 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp coarse salt
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp ground cloves
- 6 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted and cooled
- 2 eggs, lightly beaten
- 3 ripe bananas
- 1 cup baked acorn squash
- 1-2 cups diced tart apples
- 2 Tbsp unsulphured molasses
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- The squash can be left whole for baking — just cut a few slits into the sides of the squash and place in a glass baking dish or on a baking sheet. Bake for 1 hour at 375F or until the skin can be readily pierced with a fork. Allow to cool, then split open, remove the seeds and strings and scoop the meat from the shell.
- Combine the dry ingredients (first 7 above) in a large mixing bowl.
- Mash the bananas in a separate bowl. Add the remaining ingredients to the bananas and mix thoroughly.
- Carefully add the wet ingredients to the dry mix. Stir just until everything is combined and the flours have become moistened.
- Butter a 5×9″ loaf pan. Add the bread mixture to the loaf pan and bake at 350F for approximately 1 hour, or until a knife inserted in the center of the loaf comes out clean.
- Allow to cool for 5 minutes, then transfer from the loaf pan to a wire rack to finish cooling.
What are some of your favorite quick breads that use our autumn harvest?
Shared with: Fresh Bites Friday, Foodie Friday, Weekend Potluck, Weekend Bloggy Reading, Natural Living Monday, Melt in Your Mouth Monday, Hearth and Soul, Fat Tuesday, Fresh Foods Wednesday, Real Food Wednesday, Whole Foods Wednesday, Eat Make Grow, Tastetastic Thursdays, Mom’s Test Meal Mondays