- Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.
- Sift the flour, cinnamon, baking soda, baking powder, and salt together.
- In a separate bowl, beat the eggs, then mix in the vanilla, sugar, and vegetable oil. (If the oil remains separate, use a hand whisk and beat until everything looks reasonably combined.) Combine with the dry ingredients and then fold in the shredded pumpkin (and walnuts if you're adding them). Once the ingredients are all incorporated pour into a non- stick 9" x 5" loaf pan (if your pan is not non- stick, coat it with butter and flour) or spoon into 18 cupcake molds.
- For loaves, bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes. For cupcakes, bake for 35-40 minutes. Remove to cool for 5-10 minutes, then move either the loaf or the cupcakes to a wire rack to cool completely so that steam trapped between the pan and the bread doesn't make it soggy.
This recipe came from a good friend of mine, and even when accidentally over-baked, it still turned out more than edible, so it's quite robust! The original recipe called for 1.5 cups of sugar, but as I'm notoriously sugar-shy, I dropped it down to 1 cup and folks are still loving it. I think one can also experiment with some brown sugar substitution instead, to give it that extra holiday-taste and help keep even more moisture in. The original recipe also called for only 3 cups of pumpkin, but since my family loves the pumpkin taste, I bumped that up to 4.
Part of the reason I started baking was because I like my goodies to be less obviously sweet - I want to taste the flavor, not just the sugar. So most of these recipes will have the sugar dialed down.