I found myself with a whole lot of of pumpkin to use up the other day – remains from the giant-sized can I was forced to buy when my grocery store ran out of cans for normal-sized people. What else is a girl to do but purchase enough squash for a small army when pumpkin pancakes are on the mind? I promised myself I’d bake something with the leftovers. And so here I am!
There’s obviously LOADS you can do with pumpkin, but I wanted to get creative. Actually, what I really wanted was a brownie. But I couldn’t forgo the pumpkin mountain in my fridge to fulfill my chocolate-y desires. How utterly wasteful that would be.
Then it hit me. Pumpkin. Brownies. Half fudgy brownie. Half dense, pumpkin-y delight. I was so very excited about my highly original, super fun, and simply ingenious idea. Then I found out Martha Stewart had already done it. Of course she had.
Not to be outdone by the diva homemaker, I set out to put my own twist on the pumpkin brownie idea. And twist it I did! Along with performing my standard Sweet + Natural adaptations to Martha’s recipe – whole wheat pastry flour for all-purpose, Sucanat for sugar, etc. – I made a bunch of other changes to ensure I got exactly what I was looking for. Added some extra spice to the pumpkin…used a bigger pan…but most importantly, eliminated the baking powder. Martha’s brownie pics look too much like cake, right? Now, I have nothing against cake. Unless it’s trying to pose for a brownie. In that case, believe you me, I will not be fooled. I want fudge, not fluff. No baking powder = lower rise = density-dense flavor-packed yumminess. Yes.
Here’s my take on Pumpkin Brownies:
2 cups whole wheat pastry flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 3/4 cup Sucanat
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
6 ounces grain sweetened chocolate chips
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 1/4 cup pumpkin
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon cloves
1/4 teaspoon ginger
Preheat the oven to 350*F. Spray an 11×7-inch pan with cooking spray and set aside. For the base mixture, mix together whole wheat pastry flour and salt in a bowl. In a separate bowl, mix together Sucanat, eggs and vanilla until well-combined. Stir dry ingredients into wet ingredients until blended. Divide this mixture into two bowls. For chocolate mixture, melt chocolate chips and oil in a bowl. Stir into one half of the base mixture. (Note: If batter feels dry, just steal some base mixture from the remaining half and add it in. I found the chocolate batter to be drier than the pumpkin batter, so this is totally cool to do. The pumpkin batter is very generous and will not hold it against you.) For pumpkin mixture, combine pumpkin, oil, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and ginger in a bowl. Stir into other half of base mixture. Spread chocolate batter evenly into prepared pan. Top with pumpkin batter. Bake for 25-30 minutes. Makes 24 brownies.
Success! The no baking soda idea did the trick in making these Pumpkin Brownies brownies and not cakey, chocolate-and-pumpkin flavored squares. They were indeed the fudgy, dense, pumpkin-y delights I set out to achieve. They also just so happen to be orange and black – quite fitting for the upcoming Halloween holiday, wouldn’t you say?
What’s the most interesting brownie you’ve ever eaten?
P.S. After mentioning it in my last post, I’ve had a request to share my European vacation with you all. Now I know such a trip is totally unrelated to Sweet + Natural baking, but I’m highly tempted to oblige – mostly because I love reliving it! Would you guys be interested?