Holidays mean harvest loaf is comin' to town

The Food Dude shares his family recipe for holiday-friendly Harvest Loaf.
by Dave Cathey Published: December 4, 2013
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After the last morsel of turkey is licked off the finger and final slice of pumpkin pie disappears, the Catheys make harvest loaf.

Thanks to my dearly departed friend Anne Ferlo, Harvest Loaf has been part of my life for the past two decades. Anne was “Nonny” (great-grandmother) to my children, Luke and Kate, and it is they who insist this recipe come to life at the dawn of the holiday season.

Luke is a burgeoning young cook who is fast shedding his picky childhood proclivities, but sister Kate has her palate on perpetual lockdown from nuts and spices. Ironically, it's walnuts and ginger that really make Harvest Loaf sing. On the other hand, the chocolate chips and the sugar glaze make for a fine loaf all by themselves.

Anne and I got along famously, partly because when she cooked for me there were no substitutions and no omissions. Plenty of onion and garlic in all the dishes. Her husband Guy Ferlo, whom I still have dinner with several times a year, still picks onions out of his food when he sees them. (Sorry, Anne, I've tried.)

If you want to do the Harvest Loaf right, try the full recipe first and find out just how much the ginger hits the lips with a splash of spiciness before the chocolate chips and pumpkin wave over it to make the result irresistible.

Nonny is very much missed and celebrated in our hearts throughout the year, but never more than during the holidays.

Anyway, while we're dining with the Guidmeister, please do yourself and your family a favor while helping us celebrate Anne's memory with a Harvest Loaf or two ... or three.

Some folks like it room temperature; the kiddos love it refrigerated. Make two and decide for yourself:


by Dave Cathey
Food Editor
The Oklahoman's food editor, Dave Cathey, keeps his eye on culinary arts and serves up news and reviews from Oklahoma’s booming food scene.
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Nonny's Glazed Harvest Loaf

1¾ cups flour

1 cup canned pumpkin

1 cup sugar

2 eggs

1 cup chocolate chips

1 cup chopped walnuts

½ cup butter

1 teaspoon baking soda

½ teaspoon salt

½ teaspoon ground nutmeg

½ teaspoon ground ginger

½ teaspoon ground cloves

GLAZE

½ cup sifted powdered sugar

1/8 teaspoon nutmeg

1/8 teaspoon cinnamon

1 to 2 tablespoons heavy cream

• Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Sift together flour with soda, salt and spices.

• In a large mixing bowl, use an electric mixer at high speed and gradually add sugar to butter and cream until batter is light and fluffy. Blend in eggs until thoroughly beaten and combined.

• At low speed, add dry ingredients alternately with pumpkin. Begin and end with dry ingredients, blending well after each addition.

• Stir in chocolate chips and ¾ cup of walnuts.

• Grease a 9-by-5 loaf pan with butter, then pour in batter. Sprinkle top with remaining walnuts.

• Bake 65 to 75 minutes, until loaf springs back when touched lightly in the center.

• While loaf is baking, make glaze by combining all ingredients until well-incorporated. When loaf comes from the oven, remove from pan and drizzle with glaze.

• Let stand up to 6 hours.

Source: Anne Ferlo

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