When I was younger, my sister and I would add “a-licious” to nouns to make them adjectives. (As an English major in college, I should know better, right?) Well, not every word, really it was just one. Bart. She had a crush on a boy named Bart, so I would ask her if things were “Bart-a-licious” to gauge her interest in them. Silly? Yes. Fun? Definitely! Since then, I have kept this silly habit and add “a-licious” to things I really like. Like Pumpkin!
I know there are some pumpkin haters out there. You don’t have to love everything I do. It just leaves more pumpkin for me. If I were to ask you what food you eat with pumpkin, most of you would say, “Pumpkin pie” (which is one of my most favorite-est things in the entire world). How many of you have tried pumpkin bread? It’s definitely not sandwich bread. Think Banana or Zucchini bread, but better! Not only does it taste better, pumpkin is a “superfood.”
What exactly is a “superfood,” you ask? Well here’s what Wikipedia has to say: Superfood is a marketing term used to describe foods with supposed health benefits. So there you have it. It’s a marketing term. Despite that, Pumpkin is pretty awesome. Just look at the label on the Libby’s Pumpkin can:
Tons of Vitamin A and 5 grams of fiber in 1/2 cup of pumpkin puree! Talk about guilt free treating!
So what makes this food storage related? Aside from the fact that you can store canned pumpkin and it has a decent shelf-life, I used powdered eggs. POWDERED EGGS? Yes, powdered eggs. Why in the world would I have powdered eggs in my pantry? Well, remember my friend, Sarah, who used to arrange group food storage purchases? About 4 years ago, she arranged one for powdered eggs. Being paranoid about earthquakes, I bought a can thinking that I would really appreciate it if and when an earthquake hit.
Fast forward three years, I realized that I needed to use these eggs. Earthquake? No, they were going to expire at some point, and I hate to waste money. I’ve heard different estimates from as little as 3 years to as many as 10. But most things I’ve read say that powdered eggs are good for 3-5 years unopened. They must be used within 1 year of opening.
So, I needed to use a big #10 can of powdered eggs in a year. When I opened it, the color looked a bit like a mustard yellow, and once I mixed them with water, the mustard shade was even more pronounced. I was scared to try to cook them as scrambled eggs. Instead, I opted to use them in baked goods like cookies, bread, etc. I didn’t taste a lick of difference between fresh eggs and powdered eggs in my baked goods.
Now that I’ve used up almost an entire can, I’ve decided I always want to keep powdered eggs in my pantry. I found them helpful when I wanted to make cookies on a Sunday, and I didn’t want to go to the store for religious reasons. Or when I was one egg short for a recipe. Or when I wanted to leave the fresh eggs for my oldest son who was making scrambled eggs every night when he came home from work. If I did not use many eggs, I think I’d prefer these to keeping fresh eggs in my fridge, because they’d last so long!
There. I’m done evangelizing about powdered eggs. Onto the recipe… I’m not sure who authored it, so if someone knows, please let me know, and I will give credit where credit is due. My mom had this on a handwritten recipe card, and it was passed down to all of her kids. (There are many of us baking pumpkin bread and sharing it all over the USA.)
Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Bread
3 cups flour (all purpose)
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 cups sugar
2 cups cooked or canned pumpkin puree (equal to a 15-oz can, not canned pumpkin pie filling)
1 1/4 cups vegetable oil (I use olive oil)
1 1/2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips (I use mini chips or the Ghiradelli 60% cacao chips)
In a large bowl, combine the flour, cinnamon, salt, and baking soda. In another bowl, beat the eggs, sugar, pumpkin, and oil. Stir into the dry ingredients until just moistened. Fold in chocolate chips.
Pour into two greased 8x4x2 inch loaf pans. Bake at 350 degrees for 60-70 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pans to wire racks.
If you prefer, you can make 24-28 muffins. Use paper baking cups and fill 2/3 full. Bake about 22-24 minutes at 350 degrees.
I have a confession to make here. I don’t combine the dry ingredients in a separate bowl. My husband always does, but I don’t. I just don’t want to dirty another bowl. I know, I know. My muffins would probably be better if I did it, but I say they taste good enough, especially when I have fewer dishes to do afterwards.
Here are some pics and a description of me making these super yum muffins.
And that was it! These moist and delicious muffins are healthier than many other treats, and they freeze so well! Once cool, I pop the muffins in a gallon size freezer bag and put them in the freezer. I pull them out a couple of hours before I want to serve them (or the night before). Honestly, I’m not sure how long they keep in the freezer, because I can’t seem to keep them in there more than a couple of weeks with my ravenous boys. And you can’t tell one little bit that I used powdered eggs. Ask anyone!
Now, it’s your turn.
What do you think about powdered eggs? Do you think you could/would use them?
Is there anything else you use in place of traditional “fresh” ingredients which makes your life a lot easier and/or saves you money?