Someone in my office today announced that Thanksgiving is next week. To which almost everyone started contending that there was no way it could be so soon. And yet, after checking the calendar (and double checking after a few arguments about what day it was), we found it to be true. Thanksgiving, indeed, is next week. Holy Turkey & Mashed Potatoes! I am super excited. I am a Thanksgiving-a-holic. I love the food, I love the family time, I love perusing the black Friday deals and planning for way too many hours which deals I am willing to wake up at 2 AM for. And yes, I am one of those people. My brother and I even waited outside a Best Buy for 8 hours one black Friday night to score some great electronics deals. I remember the last hour where everyone who was beside us in line, freezing and tired, would all hold up their ads and with glazed eyes stare at what they came for. Most of us at that point really couldn’t even remember what it was we were standing in line for, so we just laughed and shrugged, and stared back at the ads in hopes that we might remember something. But anyways, what I love most of all about Thanksgiving is just what it stands for: Giving Thanks.
Last weekend, my husband and I made our way up north to visit Watertown, South Dakota. The home of Terry Redlin Art Center and the place where we celebrated the life of my husband’s grandfather. A man I had only known from a few meetings over the last year and had learned of more over the last weekend. One thing was clear, he was a man who was able to do giant things in in all situations during his life for his family, friends, and anyone else who needed it. What was the most powerful aspect that I remember about his life though was his ability to give thanks in all things. I cannot describe the power that is conveyed when thanks is given even in the hardest of circumstances. We (and I mean mostly I) tend to forget the overwhelming blessings I have been given and all that I have so very much to be thankful for. The best blessings have sometimes been the smallest and I so easily forget to stop and say thank you. So, this year, I hope that I am and we are abundantly thankful. Giving thanks though all circumstances, for we are all so very blessed.
SO…in the spirit of giving thanks…I suggest you make some super moist, absolutely delicious, can’t-stop-eating-it, Pumpkin Gingerbread! I made this recipe in portions specifically meant for sharing. It yields about 5-7 mini loaves depending on the size of your pan.
- 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking soda
- 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 2 teaspoons ground ginger
- 1 teaspoon ground allspice
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cloves
- 1 (15 oz) can pumpkin puree
- 3 cups white sugar
- 1 cup vegetable oil
- 4 eggs
- 2/3 cup water
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees and lightly grease pans for mini loaves
- In a large mixing bowl, beat together sugar, water, eggs and vegetable oil until smooth. Then add pumpkin, mix well.
- In a separate bowl, mix the rest of the dry ingredients. Then add slowly to wet ingredients mixture until all well mixed.
- Divide batter between prepared pans and then bake for 45 – 50 minutes (depending on size of mini loaf pan – I baked mine for about 50 minutes) Done when inserted toothpick comes out clean.
- Let cool and then serve or wrap them up and save them for friends!