You guys.....THIS BREAD!!!! I can't even. It is just so good!
I was first enlightened on the topic of pull-apart bread by Joy the Baker several years ago when she made this heavenly Cinnamon Pull-Apart Bread. My eyes were opened, and I never looked back!
A couple years ago while I was in university, I was a part of a lovely girls Bible study on campus. I was often in charge of bringing the snack each week because, duh, food blogger here! I decided to make cinnamon pull-apart bread one night, and I've never seen anything disappear quite so quickly! The girls all agreed that this might be their favourite snack ever, and it definitely made A LOT of appearances over the next few months. Whenever I make it, I think back to my uni days, and it always brings a smile to my face!
Now, since we are in the height of pumpkin season....I thought, why not throw in some pumpkin to this already heavenly creation? I am so glad I thought I would try and mess with perfection, because this loaf is the bomb. The pumpkin isn't a super overpowering flavour, but gives it the perfect Fall vibe!
pumpkin pull-apart bread
recipe by: kelsey siemens
yields: one 9x5 loaf pan (and a bit)
2 1/4 tsp active dry yeast
1/2 cup milk
1/4 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup pureed pumpkin
2 tbsp butter, melted
1 large egg
1 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla
3 cups flour (*you may need a bit more - it depends on how thick/thin your pumpkin puree is!)
flour for kneading
1/4 cup butter, melted
1 cup white sugar
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp all-spice
Heat up 1/4 cup of milk either in a small saucepan or in the microwave. You want it very very warm, but not boiling. In a small bowl, stir together your yeast, hot milk, and 1 tablespoon of brown sugar. This will activate your yeast! Set aside and let it get frothy for about 10 minutes. *If your yeast doesn't get frothy, try again until it does.
While your yeast is activating, mix together the remaining 1/4 cup of milk and 3 tablespoons of sugar in a large bowl.
Add your pumpkin puree and melted butter to the milk mixture and mix well. Beat in the egg, salt and vanilla.
Use a spatula to slowly add your flour, one cup at a time. The dough will take a while to come together, so keep stirring! You'll want to stir for at least 2 minutes. The dough should be sticky, but not impossible to work with. If your dough is still super duper sticky after 3 cups of flour, you can add a bit more!
Place your dough ball into a large, greased bowl to rise for 1 hour.
Once your dough has risen, punch it down and knead 2 more tablespoons of flour into it. Let it rest for about 5 minutes and lightly flour your work surface. Now is a good time to melt your butter, and mix together your sugar with cinnamon and all-spice for your topping.
Use a rolling pin to create a rectangle of dough that is approximately 12-inches wide and 20 to 25-inches long. (Don't worry too much about getting this perfect). Slather your rectangle of dough with butter, and sprinkle with the cinnamon and spice mixture.
Slice the rectangle so that you have 6 short strips of equal size. Stack all of your strips on top of each other, and cut into 6 equal size stacks. Gently place your stacked dough into a greased 9x5 loaf pan. You want the dough to be snug in the pan but not squished. I had a few stacks leftover, so I just cut them in half again and placed them in a mini loaf pan.
Let your dough rise again for 30 minutes. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
Bake at 350 for 30-35 minutes until the top is nice and golden brown. If your loaf starts getting super brown before the 30 minutes are up, place a piece of tinfoil over the top of the loaf to keep it from getting any darker. (For the mini loaf I cooked it for about 25 minutes.)
Let your loaf rest on the counter once it's out of the oven for 10-15 minutes, and then enjoy! It is best served warm, but will keep for a couple of days at room temperature.
Now this loaf is a surefire way to make some friends...trust me, I know! So go on and make it!