In a little over a week I am taking a trip to visit my family back in my home state. I’m excited about seeing them, but navigating the airports? Not so much. I do love flying itself, but not the airports and flight delays and missed luggage…ugh.
Ok, I don’t want to think about that right now. I would rather think about spending time with my family.
Oh, and I would rather think about this Butternut Spice Bread.
It’s funny how food smells bring back memories. Sometimes those memories are good and sometimes bad (like the one time my mom tried fried green tomatoes and they didn’t turn out right…that was a bad day). Haha (sorry, Mom). Today we’re thinking about good smells though. We’re specifically talking about the smell of a butternut squash baking in the oven. If you’ve never smelled a butternut squash baking and you have access to a squash, go bake it right now. Your house will smell absolutely wonderful.
Butternut squash was one of the things my family would grow in our garden during the summer, and it’s probably my favorite kind of squash. I think of it as the “dessert squash”. The flavor and texture are perfect for use in sweet breads and desserts and it works well as a substitute for pumpkin, if you’re wanting to try something a little different with your typical pumpkin recipes.
Whenever my mom put a butternut squash in the oven and our house filled with that wonderful smell, I always knew we had something especially yummy coming up soon.
Butternut Spice Bread was (and is) one of those things.
The butternut squash makes for a moist, soft bread, and the combination of cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and cloves is the perfect compliment to the squash’s slightly nutty, sweet flavor. My husband had this bread for the first time the other day and I think he told me about five times, “That bread is SO good”.
I’m wanting another piece now. 🙂
Butternut Spice Quick Bread
1 butternut squash (you will need 2 cups cooked, mashed squash for this recipe)
1/4 cup butter, softened
1 cup whole cane sugar or Sucanat (or regular sugar)
2 large eggs
2 cups whole wheat flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
To prepare squash: Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Slice butternut squash in half lengthwise and scoop out seeds and stringy pulp. Place cut side down in baking dish and add water to dish to depth of about 1/2 inch. Cover with foil and bake for 1 hour or until squash is tender and flesh is easily pierced with a fork. Drain off water. Once squash is cool enough to handle, scoop out flesh from shell and discard shell. Measure 2 cups of mashed squash for bread. I like to freeze any remaining squash for future use.
Preheat oven to 350. In large mixing bowl, beat butter with mixer until creamy. Add sugar and beat well. Add eggs one at a time and beat well after each addition. Set aside.
In medium bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and cloves. Add to wet ingredients, alternating with squash, while beating with mixer until blended. Pour batter into greased 9×5 inch loaf pan and bake for 55-65 minutes or until wooden pick inserted into center comes out clean. Let cool in pan 10 minutes and then remove to wire rack to cool completely.