It’s been getting chillier and chillier. End of semester crunch is upon us and the tension in the household is building. We’ve got an apparent rodent issue (though, I’d rather simply befriend the mice) and small things are starting to add up. It happens, everyone is stressed. So hey, lets be festive and bake a desert loaf to top off this four day weekend. I followed Jaymi Heimbuch’s pumpkin-walnut gingerbread recipe on treehugger.com, and she was inspired by ohsheglows.com‘s pumpkin gingerbread. Naturally, I made a few substitutions of my own according to what I had on hand.
1 cup 100% canned pumpkin
3 tbsp pure maple syrup
3/4 cup cane sugar
1/3 cup unsweetened apple sauce
1/4 cup molasses
1 tbsp chia seeds
3 tbsp water
1 2/3 cups gluten free flour
1 1/4 tsp baking soda
1 tbsp pumpkin spice (bulk barn or 1 tsp cinnamon, 1/2 tsp nutmeg, 1/2 tsp ginger)
1 tsp sea salt
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 cup chopped walnuts and pecans
Ingredients for the buttercream frosting:
1/2 cup vegan margarine, such as Earth Balance
1 3/4 cup powdered sugar
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 tbsp pumpkin pie spice
1 tbsp unsweetened original almond milk or rice milk
1. Preheat oven to 350 F. Line a regular loaf pan with parchment paper. In a small bowl, combine the chia seeds and water, stir. Let sit for 2-3 minutes.
2. In a medium mixing bowl, combine the pumpkin, maple syrup, sugar, apple sauce, molasses, and the soaked chia seeds with remaining water. Hand whisk ingredients together.
3. In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, pumpkin spice, salt, and baking powder. Stir with a fork to combine and add the wet ingredients. Add the chopped nuts and stir.
4. Pour the batter into the loaf pan. Bake for 60 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle of the loaf comes out clean. Let cool completely before removing loaf from pan.
5. For the buttercream frosting: beat the vegan margarine with the back of a spoon in a medium bowl until smooth.
6. Add half of the powdered sugar and continue to mix. Add the vanilla, pumpkin spice and almond milk. Mix until combined. Add the rest of the powdered sugar and mix until smooth and tasty.
7. When the gingerbread is completely cooled, remove from the loaf pan and frost with the butter cream. Slice, serve, and enjoy!