I heard a cookbook author say, “Casseroles feed the hurting and the hungry.” It’s so true, right? The first thing I want to do when I know someone is sick or has lost a loved one or has suffered a broken heart is to bake something for them to try and make it all better.
I feel the same way about homemade bread. There’s just something about bringing a friend or family member a fresh loaf of bread that conjures the most nostalgic feelings. I can remember when I was little and my mom would have loaves of bread sitting out on the countertop. She would place a towel over them and we would wait hours for the loaves to rise. We could hardly wait to put them in the oven and experience that first buttery bite.
Baking gifts is one of my favorite things to do and I know it’s some of your favorite things to do too. If you’re spending the holidays visiting friends and family consider bringing them a loaf of your favorite bread. Here is my favorite recipe for pumpkin bread
This recipe is for a single loaf so just double the batch if you’re making more than one loaf…
1 cup white sugar
½ cup brown sugar
½ cup vegetable oil
1 cup pumpkin
1 ¾ cup all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
¾ teaspoon salt
1/3 cup water
½ teaspoon cinnamon
½ teaspoon nutmeg
¼ teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
Step 1: Cream together sugar, eggs and oil
Step 2: Add pumpkin
Step 3: Add dry ingredients, alternating with water
Step 4: Bake in greased and floured loaf pans at 350 degrees approximately 1 hour and 15 minutes.
It smells so good baking in the oven.
If you’re giving a loaf of homemade bread as a gift, here are two bread wrapper printables you can download to help make your gift extra special.
You’ll want to print the bread wrapper on heavy card stock paper. Cut the wrapper to fit the size of your loaf. I almost always cut a piece of wax or parchment paper and wrap around the loaf first. Then I secure the paper wrapper to the wax or parchment paper with tape followed by baker’s twine or a piece of jute. That way the wax or parchment paper comes in contact with the bread as opposed to the paper. This will help create a bit of a barrier of sorts since the pumpkin bread is really moist and could leave little moisture spots on the paper. Hopefully, that makes sense. Here are a few examples….
Consider giving the bread in a vintage basket so your friends or family can use the basket all year long.
You could also give your bread in a mixing bowl with your recipe.
Dinner napkins and kitchen towels are another great way to present your gift of homemade bread.
No matter what your budget this season, giving gifts doesn’t have to be expensive. Sometimes, just saying, “I care about you” is enough.