Sourdough Pumpkin Bread Without Baking Powder
Many sourdough pumpkin bread recipes include baking powder, which, to me, defeats the purpose of the sourdough process--to make the bread rise. Admittedly, sometimes you want bread "right now" and don't have time for a long rising period. At other times, you may simply be looking for a way to use up discard. Been there, done that. Nonetheless, I like the idea of sourdough pumpkin bread that has risen without the assistance of baking powder. Yes, the bread requires a substantial time to rise. My loaves needed about 12 hours for the first rise and about 9 hours for the second, but my house is chilly (between 64-68 degrees). No problem. I mixed the dough up in the morning, went off about my business, and that evening I stirred the dough down, added a little more flour to it, kneaded it a bit, and let it do its thing overnight. By morning, the bread had risen quite nicely and was ready to bake. Because I've become ensorcelled with my air fryer and how well it bakes bread, I used it to bake two smallish loaves. They were done in about 25 minutes and came out nicely crusty (but not hard and tooth shattering) and moist and tender inside. A handful each of dried cranberries and walnuts provided extra flavor and crunch. Yes, I had to wait to eat the bread, and, yes, the bread is worth the wait. Try the pumpkin bread for breakfast with a slice of nutty-tasting Swiss cheese or perhaps some creamy goat cheese. The bread is also quite good alongside my usual yogurt and fruit. Yum, yum, yum, yum, yum.
No Baking Powder Sourdough Pumpkin Bread -- Makes 2 Small Loaves
1 cup of sourdough starter/discard (I use whole wheat)
1 cup of pumpkin puree
2 tablespoons of canola oil
1/4 cup of dark brown sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons of salt
1 1/2 cups of white whole-wheat flour
3/4 - 1 cup of all-purpose flour
1/2 cup of dried cranberries
1/2 cup of chopped or broken walnuts
Mix the sourdough starter/discard, pumpkin puree, canola oil, brown sugar, salt, and white whole-wheat flour together well (and feel free to use a little muscle) in a large bowl and cover the mixture loosely with plastic wrap. Let the dough rise for 8-12 hours or until about doubled. Stir the dough down and knead in the 3/4-1 cup of all-purpose flour, a little at a time until the dough is smooth and only a tad sticky (about 5-6 minutes). Knead in the cranberries and walnuts. Divide the dough into two pieces and shape each of the pieces into a round ball a little larger than a softball. Place the dough balls in oiled bowls or pans and spritz them with non-stick cooking spray or drizzle them with a little more oil to coat them. Cover the dough balls loosely with plastic wrap and let them rise for 8-10 hours or until about doubled. When you're almost ready to bake the dough balls, preheat the air fryer for a few minutes at 360 degrees. Tip the dough balls out onto a sheet of parchment paper just big enough to fit in the air fryer (with a little extra to help you lift the bread out when it's done) or leave the dough balls in their pans if the pans will fit in the air fryer (I use a 6-inch pan). Bake the dough balls, one-at-a-time, for 20-30 minutes or until they reach an internal temperature of 190 degrees. Let the bread balls cool before slicing them.