Like most things in life, getting gloriously charred bread on the first bake is not easy. But I encourage you to not give up on your quest to perfect the blackened pumpkin bread. Many hours of practice will be required to sharpen the techniques I’m sharing with you today, and not everyone will succeed. However, I feel that I cannot keep this valuable information to myself when I know that millions of families are struggling each day with soft, moist, golden-brown pumpkin bread. So, to ease my conscience, here are the secret steps to creating charred pumpkin bread:
Preheat Oven to 400 degrees
Let’s be honest, you thought that the first step would be the broil setting on your oven. That is your first mistake. We are not trying to annihilate the bread, just burn it. Also you may inadvertently burn the outside, but leave a soft and delicious interior that would be palatable to eat. To burn pumpkin bread properly, you must slowly eradicate all moisture from the loaf during the extended bake cycle. This does require high heat and a steady mind, but the carbon by-product taste will be worth it.
If you can, take the bread out periodically and place it under a high powered fan for no more than 5 minutes to allow even more moisture to evaporate during baking. If you leave the bread out for more than 5 minutes, it will cool and take longer to finish the burn so be quick to return it to the oven.
Prepare Distractions Ahead of Time
While you may think that a distracted cook will be more likely to accidentally burn something, we are going for something deeper here. Everyone knows that dreaded feeling that occurs while you are picking up clothes, watching a video, or reading a book and suddenly the aromas of an overcooked catastrophe leak from kitchen. If you are not properly distracted, you may not be able to overcome the conditioned response to rush to the kitchen and immediately stop the burning process. This may happen so fast that you are not able to stop yourself in time. This is why it is so important that you distract yourself sufficiently to avoid this common beginner mistake.
Plan to wear noise canceling headphones, and find something to stuff up your nose to prevent smells from wafting in. If it’s possible, leave the house and do not plan to return until your burn timer has reached at least 85-90% of the predetermined cooking time.
Some students of mine have found this to be the hardest step. Stay the course.
Sharpen Your Bread Knife
You may be unfortunate enough to have other people in the house while you are trying to produce burnt pumpkin bread. While you may be prepared for brick bread baking, others in your house may not be so ready of mind. While you may be strong enough to resist the urge to remove the bread from the eternal flame, you should also be ready to defend the oven door against those who would take your masterpiece before its time. While I do not recommend any sort of violence, your quiet blade sharpening near the oven can prove to be a steady deterrence towards those with ill intentions.
You will also need a sharp knife if you will have any hope of cutting the bread. Be prepared.
Eat the bread!
Don’t forget this last step. You didn’t do all this work for nothing! The best way to eat this crispy creation (if you were able to cut it open) is to dip each slice in a cup of melted butter. This usually softens up the product enough to be able to chew it. In a worst case scenario, you can sprinkle powdered sugar on top of the butter soaked slice and let it dissolve in your mouth if it cannot be chewed.
Well there you have it! How to properly burn pumpkin bread!
The moral of the story:
Yes, this is a true story! I completely burned TWO loaves of pumpkin bread recently. Not a fun experience!
Just remember that bloggers don’t have it all together and to prove that fact I just wanted you to know that yes, sometimes we burn bread. Really really badly!
While we may take pretty pictures and present those the majority of the time, don’t forget that we are still imperfect wives, imperfect moms and imperfect bloggers.
Not every picture in life event is Pinterest or Facebook worthy.
When you are discouraged that it seems like everyone around has their life together while you are struggling, remind yourself that people only put their best foot forward. No one wants their ugly on display.
Don’t compare yourself to others and do the best that you can!
but they measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise. 2 Corinthians 10:12b
To be continued (with a pumpkin bread recipe that you’ll actually want to bake!)…
Your turn, do you know any ways to improve on a burnt pumpkin bread? Do you have a burnt dessert story to share?
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