I’m the youngest of four sisters. We’re an incredibly tight-knit bunch, despite the fact we live on opposite corners of California (with one outlier in Arizona). One recipe – a staunch family favorite – always brings us all together like none other: Pumpkin Chocolate Bread.
Baking in a clan of four sisters has its pro’s and con’s…let’s start with the latter. When all of us come together, there are too many chiefs, too few Indians. The pro’s: we laugh consistently throughout the entire process. A good laugh or two is awesome in any kitchen, but we take it to the next level. Hyperventilation into paper bags and snorting.
Another characteristic of the Arnold family? Teasing. Incessantly. I smile writing this because the truth is, laughing with my sisters is truly the best medicine. It is also downright ugly. We’re so damn comfortable with one another that the laughter just flows. So, crammed into our “cozy” kitchen in Whittier, we’d squeeze together and bake this heavenly pumpkin chocolate bread.
Even today, the smell is deeply associated with memories of four girls (and one very unhelpful older brother) breaking into a freshly-baked batch. December is now upon us, and I felt it the perfect time to share this super-rich, moist, fall recipe. This is a fool-proof recipe, one entirely irresistible. It can be tackled by the most timid of bakers (and the bread freezes perfectly!)
Begin by simmering ½ cup heavy whipping cream with a chai tea bag. Let it steep for 20 minutes. While the tea steeps, chop ½ cup high quality white chocolate discs. Remove your tea bag and reheat the cream mixture. Once at a simmer, remove from heat. Pour over ½ cup of chopped white chocolate. Stir until a smooth pouring consistency.
In terms of pans, you have a ton of flexibility here: a mini-bundt pan, baking loaf, or regular bundt are all fair game. Bake them at 350 until the toothpick test gives you a green light. Enjoy this family favorite – it’s sure to become a staple for yours too!
Photos by: Maria Hedrick Photography