Pumpkin and Cheese
Making Wickedly Delicious Love
Pumpkins are a cultural icon, evoking cozy memories of childhood carvings, romps through vine-covered patches, costumes sticky with Halloween candy, and warm, sweet spices. You don’t have to love the pumpkin for its jolly symbolism, and I know many abhor the poor gourd due to incessant overuse the moment August rolls into September. To be fair, it’s not the pumpkin that has been bastardized, but the array of spices that tend to accompany it in baked goods. The pumpkin itself is a thing to revere, especially when roasted and pureed into a thick, buttery paste filled with a wealth of nutrients, including vitamin A, vitamin C, and dietary fiber. If you get your hands on a really good pumpkin, its pureed flesh will also deliver a luscious, nutty sweetness that is especially delightful when baked in a hearty bread that’s smeared with tangy dairy. Alas, it’s generally wasted on oily loaves with frostings so sweet they could rot a tooth clean from the gum, while most healthy versions aren’t worth eating. This recipe, on the other hand, combines a simple, wholesome pumpkin bread with a maple-kissed spread of real cheese.