chocolate pumpkin bread semi-fail

Being the start of September and it never being to early to begin making pumpkin delicacies, I decided to make Chocolate Pumpkin Bread, recipe courtesy of the post punk kitchen. I had made this once before and was thoroughly satisfied with the results: dense moist loaf. That comes from the addition of the pumpkin, I believe.

I made a few alterations this time around (some by choice and some by circumstance). The recipe calls for 1/4 C applesauce (as a fat replacer) which I did not have. Instead I threw in 1/4 C silken tofu. I am not sure if it works as a fat replacer, but I had success using it in banana bread instead of an egg and I decided to try. I also added 1/4 t. of cayenne pepper because I am obsessed with the chocolate spiced combinations. I wanted the loaf to have a kick, in addition to the spices already included to compliment the pumpkin (cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, ginger). Finally, instead of chocolate chips (which are optional anyway) I used oats to give some texture.

The result? Well, it was OK. The texture was moist and delicious, yet slightly to gummy in my opinion. This may be due to the fact that I keep my flour in the freezer as I am afraid it will either go bad or collect moths as the semester wears on and my baking time wears thin. Using cold flour is excellent for pie crust, but in other recipes I am not quite sure. Because the flour was colder, I had to mix more rapidly and for longer time which is the exact opposite of what you want to do for quick breads and muffins. A google search on baking with cold flour yielded a variety of results, with the only consistent on relating to yeast breads (cold flour inhibits rise when using yeast) but this I was aware of. So possibly this affected the texture. 
Tastewise…it was a bit bland in my opinion. Not cloyingly sweet, not uber chocolaty, and only faintly reminiscent of pumpkin. I was expecting something with pizzaz, especially because I added cayenne. I did like the oatmeal in the bread, and would even add more next time. 
I had half a can of pumpkin leftover, so that was obviously converted into pumpkin butter. In a saucepan I put pumpkin, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, cardamom, a dash of lemon juice and 1/4 c of water. I also added agave to taste, about 1/3 cup I would estimate. I stirred it and brought it to boil for a while until it thickened to a nice consistency. It makes for a delish topping on oatmeal in the AMs or on a Peanut Butter Sandwich.