Over the past several weeks we have discussed both how reading and literature are important for little ones and the amazing connections that are created when you cook with children.
Today, we decided to put them together as we eat our way through the seasonally-appropriate story The Runaway Pumpkin by Kevin Lewis. In this joyful, rhyming book, with beautiful and fun pictures, a pumpkin on the loose reminds the characters of different delicious pumpkin foods – pumpkin bread, pumpkin soup and pumpkin pie. Our house was filled with a warm, delicious pumpkin smell for a couple of days as Ella and I chopped, stirred, scooped and measured. We started, as you can, with roasting our pie pumpkin and baking some Pumpkin & Oat Morning Bread (though to be honest, this bread was enjoyed throughout the day!) Low in sugar, with the addition of oats, nuts, dried fruit and spices, this is a snack I’m happy to say “yes” to time and again.
Pumpkin & Oat Morning Bread Recipe
You Will Need
1 Cup flour (all purpose, whole wheat or a combo)
1 Cup rolled oats (regular or quick-cooking)
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 & 1/2 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp ground nutmeg
1/2 tsp ground cloves
1/3 Cup milk
1/2 tsp vanilla
1/4 Cup brown sugar
6 Tbl unsalted butter – at room temperature
15oz pumpkin puree (a touch less than 2 cups)
2 eggs – at room temperature
1/2 Cup chopped nuts
3/4 Cup dried cranberries or raisins
What To Do
- Preheat your oven to 350ºF (177ºC).
- Thoroughly mix the flour, oats, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and cloves. Set aside.
- In another bowl combine the milk and vanilla. Also set aside.
- Using a stand or hand mixer (or good-old arm strength!) cream the butter. Then add the brown sugar and beat on high until lightened in color and texture – about 4 minutes of mixing.
- Gently beat in the eggs and then the pumpkin until just combined.
- Next, add the dry and wet ingredients, alternating one then the other until it is all mixed together.
- Finally, add the nuts and dried fruit and mix until just combined.
- Pour batter into a greased bread pan. We put part of our batter into mini-loaf pans and the rest into a muffin tray. Bake muffins for 40 minutes, loaves for 50-60 minutes.
While you let your bread cool, read The Runaway Pumpkin and then enjoy your very own Pumpkin & Oat Morning Bread – a little sweet, a little spicy, this bread makes a tasty and hearty addition to breakfast with a touch of cream cheese or nut butter.
Roasting Your Pumpkin
Our pumpkin recipes can be made either with canned pumpkin or roasted pie pumpkin. Roasting your pumpkin may seem like a big undertaking, but I promise, it’s very easy and loads of fun for little ones! Pie pumpkins are smaller than the larger pumpkins used this time of year in Halloween and Autumnal decorations. The skin is a deeper orange and the flesh is sweet and not as stringy.
Start by preheating your oven to 400°F (205°C).
Remove the stem and cut the pumpkin in half. Hand a spoon to your little one (or they can just use their hands) and scoop out the seeds in the middle.
Place both halves flat-side-down in a shallow baking dish. Roast for about 1.5 hours.
Remove the pumpkin and let it cool. When it is cool enough to handle, you will see that the yummy pumpkin insides have separated from the skin – how neat is that?
If you would like, you can squeeze the excess water from the pumpkin and puree the pulp in a blender so that the consistency is closer to that of canned pumpkin called for in most pumpkin recipes.
What other vegetable besides pumpkin could be used to make this bread?
How do you think that would change the taste?
How do you like your bread? What would you like to do differently next time?
In The Runaway Pumpkin, who wanted to have the pumpkin bread?
Do you think they would like some of yours?
Do you know any other books that talk about food you’d like to cook?
If not, who could you ask to help you find one?
Connect with us
So how did your Pumpkin & Oat Morning Bread turn out? What kind of nuts and dried fruit did you add? Please share your stories and pictures in the comments section below, on our Facebook page, or email us and we will feature you on our site – we look forward to connecting with you there.