PUMPKIN YEAST SANDWICH BREAD
1/4 cup warm water…………………...........…3/4 TB (1-1/2 pkgs) yeast ~
(1 pkg. yeast usually is 1/4 oz. ~ 3 tsp = 1 TB and 1/2 oz. = 1 TB ** fyi: the expiration date on my yeast was 9 mos. ago, but it still worked well. If yours is expired within last year or so, maybe add a touch more than is called for in the recipe)
1/3 cup warm milk (I like unsweetened vanilla almond or cashew milk)
1 large egg………………………………...........3/4 cup pumpkin puree
1 TB vegetable oil……………………...............1 tsp. Kosher salt
1/4 cup brown sugar or 2 TB brown Splenda blend
1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon………….............…1/8 tsp. ground nutmeg
(TIP: although there's just a hint of spice here, you can make it more savory by omitting the cinnamon and nutmeg, and adding about 1/4 tsp. ground or crushed dried sage instead)
About 3-1/2 cups bread flour ..........................OPTIONAL: 1 TB melted butter (to brush on top before baking)
Combine warm water & yeast in bowl of electric mixer with the paddle attachment. Mix in the milk, egg, pumpkin, oil, brown sugar, salt, and spices to combine. Then gradually add 2 cups of the flour to the bowl, and mix until a sticky dough has formed. Now switch to the dough hook. (I couldn't find my dough hook, so used the paddle, which seemed to work just fine.)
With the mixer on low speed, gradually add the remaining flour until you have a dough that is smooth and elastic, and not sticky. Transfer the dough to a well-oiled bowl, turning once to coat the dough. Cover the bowl with a slightly damp kitchen towel and let the dough rise until doubled (about 1 hour).
TIP: If your kitchen is cool, you can put your bowl on top of the refrigerator or on the counter next to the refrigerator, where there's usually warmer air circulating ~ or in your laundry room if the dryer is running. (I guess you could also drag it into the bathroom too, if someone is taking a hot shower in there!) My bread became a sun follower, and ended up on a side table in the family room.
Get out a 9” loaf pan and spray generously with buttery non-stick spray. *
Punch down the dough and it out onto a lightly floured work surface. (I use a silpat mat, near the sink, for easier clean-up.) Press into a rectangle just a little less than 9" long and about 8" wide. With the long side of the dough facing you, roll the dough up, pressing down to make sure the dough sticks to itself. Put the loaf into the prepared pan (seam side down) and press down gently so the dough touches all four sides of the pan. Cover with a slightly dampened towel and let rise again until almost doubled (about 45 minutes).
Preheat oven to 375° F. If you want, you can brush 1 TB melted butter on top before baking (it will make a softer crust, that's a little shinier.) Bake for about 30 minutes, or until a nice, deep golden brown (it will also have a somewhat hollow sound if you tap the top of the bread with your fingernail). Transfer to a wire rack and let cool. ** Makes 1 loaf
TIP: I recommend turning the bread on it’s side before slice with a long, serrated knife.
Good with honey mustard, or try spreading some cranberry relish on your sandwiches.