For the love of Pumpkin

Oh how I love all things pumpkin!  Normally this would be more of a post for Fall weather but I say screw putting pumpkin in this seasonal category that makes me think I can’t enjoy it year round!  I’ve always made pumpkin bread recipes as more of a quick dough recipe, or in other words a sweeter, non-yeast type loaf, however when I saw a recipe for a pumpkin yeast bread I thought what could be better!  I made mine into rolls to go with dinner which is the beauty of a pumpkin yeast bread.  Making it into a lean yeast dough breaks it out of the dessert/breakfast category and makes it a great bread to make into a loaf for sandwiches (actually I take back the breakfast/dessert comment because it would make a great bread with butter in the morning or with egg, milk and chocolate for a bread pudding dessert!).  I served mine with a Scallop and Shrimp casserole which complimented it perfectly and ended up being a meal I would definitely put on one of my top ten (hopefully a post will follow soon with that recipe because it’s just too darn good not to share)!

Pumpkin Yeast Rolls adapted from King Arthur Flour via

4½ cups bread flour ( I used closer to 5 just to get a more elastic and less sticky texture)
1 tablespoon instant yeast
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground ginger
⅓ cup sugar
1½ teaspoons salt
2 eggs
1¾ cups pumpkin
4 tablespoons (½ stick) butter, melted and cooled

Mix the flour, yeast, spices, sugar, and salt in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook.

In a large measuring cup, lightly beat the eggs and whisk in the pumpkin and butter. With the mixer on low-speed, gradually add the liquid ingredients. Continue mixing on dough until soft and not too sticky, about 9 minutes.  Pat the dough into a ball with lightly floured hands and place into a bowl sprayed with Pam.  Rotate the ball of dough in the bowl a couple of times to coat with the oil and cover with plastic wrap and set in a warm place to rise (about 2 hours).

Punch your dough down and cut in half to work with one portion at a time.  Cut each half into about 3 oz portions and round each portion (use your hands to make into a smooth ball).  Let your round balls of dough rest briefly so they won’t be as temperamental when you roll each ball into a rope.  Twist each rope into a knot and place each knotted roll onto a cookie sheet with parchment paper.  (There are several ways to make a knot-I make a circle out of the rope and pull one end through so it peeks out through the center and tuck the other end the opposite way through the middle so you don’t see that end of the rope.)  Let your rolls rise again for another hour and a half or so and then bake at 375 for about 20 minutes.

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