Cookin’ with the Boys: Ep. 2 – Pumpkin Bread

From Issue 3

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Conor McGregor once said, “Life is about growing and improving and getting better.” My fellow amateur cooking instructors and I could only heed this great Irish philosopher’s advice (Note: Some of his other philosophies should probably not be followed, as they might advocate for some not so good things) as we began our second cooking adventure.

Last episode, I promised you that what we cooked this time would be simpler; therefore, we chose a classic fall treat that we thought even the most inexperienced of chefs could cook: pumpkin bread. While it was much less difficult than our all-day ribs affair of Episode 1 (If you haven’t seen episode 1, check it out on our website), our day cooking pumpkin bread presented its own obstacles and challenges.

We gathered on a Sunday afternoon (this time at Stewart’s house rather than Will’s.) We began by finding a recipe of all the supplies we would need–flour, salt, baking soda, baking powder, cloves, cinnamon, nutmeg, butter, sugar, eggs, and pumpkin puree– and then journeyed again to where all great food adventures begin, the great armoury of food: Kroger. This time, we gathered at the massive Kroger off of Highway 51 in Madison. Similar to last episode, more information about the amounts of each ingredient and the order in which to mix them will be available in our video.

Our first challenge occurred on our way to the grocery store. Stewart and Emory decided they wanted to switch seats when we came to a stop in order for Stewart to be able to film better. When we came to the next red light, they both got out of the car and swapped seats, and everything seemed to go smoothly. However, when we got to Kroger, Stewart realized he had lost his wallet. He knew he had it in his pocket when he left the house, so we frantically searched all throughout my car and the area around my parking spot. When we were unable to find it, we concluded it must have fallen out when Emory and Stewart switched seats. I drove back by where they had switched seats but saw no sign of the wallet. This put a damper on all our spirits, particularly Stewart’s; nevertheless, we persevered because we knew we had a duty to teach our readers and viewers how to cook pumpkin bread, and we proceeded to obtain our ingredients.

Once we got back to Stewart’s, we began to mix our ingredients, mixing the dry and wet ingredients in separate bowls before mixing them together. Originally, we had intended to bake two loaves, but we ended up making enough mix for three.

When we finished making the mix, we put it in the oven for about an hour. In order to keep ourselves entertained while the bread was cooking, we decided to make jack-o-lanterns. Stewart made his into a helmet, while Emory and I cut off the wrong side of the pumpkin and had to use duct tape to fix our mistake. (Pumpkins smell awful by the way.)

The bread ended up taking a little longer to finish than we expected. Our main difficulty was getting the bread to cook all the way through; because of this, we ended up burning parts of the top of the bread. Once it was cooked, we dug in.

We thought something might have been wrong with it because we liked it but not all that much. We asked Stewart’s dad to taste it, and he said that was exactly how pumpkin bread was supposed to taste. So I guess we just don’t like pumpkin bread all that much. Oh well, it is what it is.

Overall, we, just as the Cavaliers in LeBron’s second year, improved significantly our second time cooking, and this experience went much more smoothly than the first (except for the part where Stewart lost his wallet that contained his credit card, driver’s license and passport information, along with all of his cash.)

We hope you enjoyed the second episode of Cookin’ with the Boys and that you have learned how to make a classic fall treat. Join us next episode as we attempt to make something simpler that we actually enjoy eating.