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Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Pumpkin Bread with Millet & Chocolate

I love it when I'm at the market and I happen upon a new (to me) ingredient.  Something I'd heard of, sure...but never actually been able to get my hands on.  So, imagine my excitement when I happened upon millet in one of my market meanders.  I've been seeing millet used a lot lately, even though I know it's actually been around for ages.  As in 5,000 years or so.  This makes it one of the earliest cultivated grains.  Although its origins were in China, it has long been used in India, as well.

The funny thing is, as I studied the tiny little grains (round with a small speck on the side that sort of makes it look like a tiny bead), I had the oddest feeling that I actually had seen or used them before.  I knew it would eventually come to me, if only I could locate that file stashed away somewhere in the overflowing file cabinets lining my brain.  And then...OH!  Duh.  Of course.  I have seen them...held them even...many times before.  Where might that have been, you ask? 
photo credit: Lyrinda Snyderman via Gary Bogue 
Why yes, in the deer bird feeder of course!  Yes, I know that I need to do what I'm always telling my kids (and the hubs) to do- pay more attention!  Guilty.

Millet is easily digested, cooks quickly, and it's gluten-free.  Whether eaten hot as a breakfast cereal, used in place of rice or potatoes as a side dish, or added uncooked to crackers or breads, it's a fantastic addition to any pantry.  I think so, at least.  My inaugural millet celebration used the simplest technique: adding it dry to a quick bread.  I found it oddly good.  Like, I couldn't stop taking bites.  Basically because it was such a strange new sensation.  Crunchy like nuts...yet not nutty.  A bit "dry" and reminiscent of puffed rice...if that rice was extremely hard.  I realize that kind of makes it sound bad.  But really, it's not.  I'm just not sure how to describe it.  It definitely added interest and a pleasant crunch to this soft, moist bread.  
Pumpkin Bread w/ Millet & Chocolate
adapted from Joy the Baker 
makes 3 mini loaves (1 regular size loaf / ~16 muffins)*

4 oz. butter, melted
¾ c. dark brown sugar
2 large eggs
1 c.  pumpkin puree
2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
1¾ c. whole wheat flour
½ tsp. fine sea salt
1 tsp. baking soda
½ tsp. ground cinnamon
½ tsp.  ground ginger
⅛ tsp. ground cardamom
⅛ tsp. ground mace
good grating of nutmeg
½ c. dry millet
¼ c. buttermilk
½ c. dark chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 325° F.  Grease 3 mini loaf tins and set aside.

In a large bowl, whisk together melted butter, brown sugar, eggs, pureed pumpkin, and vanilla extract (I just use a fork, no biggie).

In a separate bowl, stir together flour, salt, baking soda, spices, and millet.

Add the dry ingredient to the wet ingredients.  Add the buttermilk and stir everything together.  Fold in the chocolate chips.  Just be careful not to over-mix as this tends to toughen up quick breads.
Divide batter evenly into prepared pans.  Lift each one a couple of inches off the counter and then drop back on the counter a few times to "settle" and level out the top.
Slide carefully into the preheated oven and bake for ~30-35 minutes (*time may be longer for one regular size loaf & shorter for muffins 10-15 minutes either way), or until a skewer/toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.  Let rest for at least 15 minutes before serving.  Serve warm or at room temperature.  Bread will last, well wrapped at room temperature, for up to 3 days.
Can also be frozen successfully by sealing in a freezer-safe bag and stored in the freezer.
I am sharing this post with:
Tasty Tuesdays 33 shades of green TastyTuesdayBB a little birdie told me rook no. 17 hearthnsoul150 tnsc BYOB-badge

Would you like to comment?

  1. Never tried millet before, but the bread looks really delicious, specially with the pumpkin and chocolate chip combo! Oh, great of the deer/bird feeder, awesome!

  2. When two of my favorite food bloggers (you and Beyond the Peel) are talking up an ingredient, I take it as a sign that I've simply got to give it a try.  Consider me 'sold' on millet.  Can't wait to give it a try!


  3. Check out the first and fourth paragraphs of the post, that'll explain the little that I know about millet...
    ...Heather Schmitt-Gonzálezblog: girlichef
    twitter: @girlichef

  4. your bread looks delicious! whats millet? =/

  5. Chocolate and pumpkin!  Yummm!  And the millet sprinkled throughout the bread looks stunning. :)  I wonder if I can find millet here.  I haven't been able to find any pumpkins yet and I am seriously craving it right now. :P 

  6. Bread really looks awesome though idea of using millet in the pumpkin bread is new to me. loved it and with chocolate chips...sounds so good

  7. In the bird feeder? lol, I have always wanted to try this grain. Thanks for sharing!

  8. Jessica @ CajunliciousDecember 22, 2011 at 9:37 AM

    Beautiful photos! I love pumpkin bread!

  9. this looks so good, i've never even tried millet, but i bet it's delicious in this bread!

  10. I have millet growing under my bird feeders too!!! However, never in my life would I dream of combining such wonderful ingredients to bake up such a lovely creation, Heather.

    Simply marvelous, lol...

    Thank you so much for sharing...

  11. Dry millet in the bread! Great idea!
    I found millet flour and I used it in bread and cookies. It's really great. Its flavour caugh my imagination. I must try your recipe with the dry version.

  12. Haha I had to laugh when you said you saw it in the bird feeder before!  I know it must have been delicious in this pumpkin bread...bird food or not. :P

  13. What a unique combination - pumpkin + millet + chocolate
    It definitely sounds interesting, and as I'm all for new things I think I'm gonna like this very much

  14. Your bread looks lovely, and it sounds delicious too. I love the photo of the deer as well - I know they can be a pain, but that really is cute! 

  15. Pumpkin chocolate and healthy grains! Those lucky deer. Lucky you for doing this and lucky me for reading it.

  16. josé manuel martín fernándezDecember 22, 2011 at 9:37 AM

    Que color tan estupendo tiene, me encanta

  17. Never thought to use millet, but I love the combination! Great idea.

  18. This looks yummy---I think I used to put millet in my granolas.  I haven't seen it in a long time, I'll have to track some down.  I'll bet they give a nice crunch to this bread.

  19. I know, pretty sad, right?  I swear I'm not dense.

  20. Oh so beautiful, oh so healthy, oh so wish I had some right now.  Absolutely love the deer photo - precious.

  21. I like how good the millet shows up in the bread! Who knew what a nice texture  it would give it? :) You didn't remember that millet is a main part of bird seed? I even have some growing in the garden under my bird feeder where some spilled out. I let it go to seed so the Cardals can eat it! I bought millet once (from a bulk dispenser at a health food store) by mistake I thought it was quinoa...ooops! I bought some cinnamon chips, and made some pumpkin puree yesterday to make bread, maybe I'll add some millet!

  22. you know..i just had a piece of chocolate in italy with millet in it...sort of like an italian version of a nestle crunch. to be honest, i think i would prefer your way of preparing more! this cake/bread/loaf looks so delicious! thank you for sharing with tuesday night supper club.