Kitchen Experiments (Thailand) Pumpkin Spice Bread

pumpkin4Like I said in my last post, I like to just wing things. Nothing wrong with that, right? Sometimes the best things come from experiments, sometimes the worst, but that’s OK. I always measure time in the kitchen as productive, even if the results are less than perfect. I usually don’t feel this kind of ‘compassion’ for time wasting annoyances. I don’t suffer you time wasting fools gladly in most parts of my life—but the kitchen, all time is equal, good or bad it’s the same, I enjoy the successes and the failures, though I’d give a slight nod up to the good things…

Pumpkin Spice bread, Tangzhong method—good or bad, success or failure? I have to ask my wife, but more about the kitchen experiments. We buy a lot of pumpkin around here. Thailand is crazy about them. Not like the States where we kind of just associate them with Halloween, here they cook lots of things with them.

The Fak Thong (Thai ฟักทอง for “golden squash”) is an Asian variety of winter squash, not really a pumpkin, gourd, or a squash—sort of a hybrid, first seen in Cambodia, then brought to Japan by the Portuguese. pumpkin2Can you make bread from it? Well, anything is worth trying once, and I thought for a few hours, and checked the Internet, and sure you can make bread from it, why not. I’m under the impression that you can make bread from just about anything, and pumpkin is anything.

Basic Tangzhong recipe, add some spices, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, 1/4 dried ginger, 1/4 nutmeg, and 1/8 of a teaspoon dried cloves… It smells good, and the dough did the proper rise, and I made one brioche type loaf (6 balls, greased pan, mixing things up), and one braided loaf, though the braid wasn’t very good with the amount of dough for the loaf…

Baking time about 22 minutes (2 small loaves) with a real wet dough, and I am assuming it was the 1 cup of pureed pumpkin that my wife prepared (can’t get the store bought here in Thailand)…

pumpkin1A few observations, since I am treating this more like a science experiment than anything else. One, the loaf was super super soft, must be the wet ingredients, the 1/2 cup of Tangzhong plus the pumpkin. Two, the bread actually tastes better as it sits longer. Thus the hot bread with butter thing doesn’t work here–must be the spices, which give it quite a nice flavor, a bit like a mellow pumpkin pie, as well as the color. This is not a bread for bread snobs, no way, kid’s stuff maybe, a dessert bread? A bread for French Toast? Yes, yes…  I liked it, not loved but liked it (strong like!). On the other hand, my wife just went crazy over it, not that sweet which is good, and she loved that it was soft…

Soft bread, Thailand, good! So kitchen experiments Pumpkin Spice Bread (episode 1) is a success!

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