To Knead or Not to Knead: The Art of Baking Bread | Chrissy Barua | Skillshare

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To Knead or Not to Knead: The Art of Baking Bread

teacher avatar Chrissy Barua, Love. Laugh. Travel. Eat.

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Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

11 Lessons (34m)
    • 1. Introduction

    • 2. Class Project Overview

    • 3. The Building Blocks of Bread

    • 4. Gluten 101: Let's Get Stretchy!

    • 5. Leavening 101: Rising to the Occasion

    • 6. Quick and Dirty: Irish Brown Bread

    • 7. Cheater's Yeast: Beer Bread

    • 8. Flour Power: Rustic White Loaf

    • 9. Go Away Gluten!: Pao de Queijo

    • 10. Conclusion

    • 11. Bonus! Sweet & Simple Pumpkin Bread

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About This Class

Are you a bread lover, but totally terrified at the thought of making if yourself? Do you love nothing more than the fragrant aroma of bread baking?  Do you dream about tearing into a pillowy loaf without having to share it?  If you answered yes to one or all of the above, then this class is for you!

This class is meant for the baking novice.  We’re going to talk about the basics of bread baking, from ingredients to equipment, and even talk a little bit about the science of what exactly is happening in the oven.  Then, we’ll get in the kitchen and work our way up from a basic quick bread to a rustic yeast-based loaf.  Further, I’ll share an overview of gluten-free bread and we’ll make some delicious gluten-free cheese rolls.  And finally- a bonus!  We’ll make a sweet pumpkin bread, the perfect addition to any brunch year-round.


Meet Your Teacher

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Chrissy Barua

Love. Laugh. Travel. Eat.


Hello! Welcome to my class. I’m Chrissy, and I’m addicted to bread.  Over pasta, rice, cookies or potatoes, bread has always been my vice.

My passion for food is inherent, but it all came to a head a little over three years ago when I decided to start my blog, The Hungary Buddha Eats the World, where I cook dishes from around the world.  Through it, I’ve been able to meet some wonderful people, and it has led to some awesome opportunities.  I have developed recipes for HGTV, and am a monthly contributor for the Chicago Foodseum’s blog, The Red Fork and part of the Culinary Content Network at The Daily Meal.  Additionally, I’ve been featured on BuzzFeed, and even The Today Show.

When I’m not making a mess in the k... See full profile

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1. Introduction: Hi, My name is Chrissy, and today I'm gonna teach you the art of making bread. Now, I'm not a professional chef. I'm actually a lawyer and a part time blogger at the Hungry Beauty in the World. And up until a few years ago, the idea of making Brad was completely foreign to me at home, it just seemed like such a difficult insurmountable. But then I realized that people have been making for thousands of years without fancy equipment or fancy tools, and I figure there's no reason that I couldn't make it home With a basic understanding of ingredients and techniques, I realized it was really easy. And today I'm going to de mystify it for you. This classes for anyone, for the dinner to the person that probably has more experience than Ideo. And in the course of the class, we're making four different types of breads, starting with a really easy fix, Irish brown bread and working our way up to a little bit more difficult, rustic white front. We're also gonna talk a little bit about the science behind Putin and leavening and finally talking a little bit about gluten free flours and makes a delicious food cheese. So if that sounds good to you, roll up your sleeves, put on your apron and let's get 2. Class Project Overview: So for your class assignment, there's two parts to it. Actually, the first part. I want to make this class interactive. So I want to hear from you what scares you about making bread, And what do you hope to gain from this class? The second part is you're gonna pick one of the four types of main types of breads that we're making today and pick one of them and take a picture uploaded to the class page and tell us what makes yours different. Did you user favorite kind of beer did you to switch up the cheese? Did you use oatmeal or seeds on the brown bread? Tell us, because it's probably idea that we might not have that. We might want to try it at home for ourselves. 3. The Building Blocks of Bread: the idea of bread is actually quite simple. Flower liquid in leavening, but a little bit depends on ingredients, technique and equipment. But like I said before, because people have been making bread for thousands of years without fancy stuff, you don't need fancy stuff, either. There's four types of mean types of flour, the first being all purpose readily available at any grocery store and perfect for really any type of brother you want to make. The second is whole wheat flour, which actually has a little bit more protein, but due to the composure of it actually inhibits clued in, which is not ideal for making certain types of breads. Cake flour has a low protein content in high starch content, also not ideal for making breads, but perfect for the soft, crumbly cake say we all love to eat. And finally, there's bread flour, which has high protein and high gluten, making it perfect for making usti breads. Today in class, we're gonna be using all purpose whole wheat and bread flour, all readily available at your grocery store. The second thing of importance or the type of pans. There's four main types pans, metal, glass, ceramic and silicon metal makes the best K pans because they are high conductors of heat, glass and ceramic. While they do conduct, he they do take a little bit longer to heat up and therefore aren't the best for making for making something like bread. Were temperature used to be kind of exact. They're better for making things like bread pudding or castles. Silicone. While it makes it easy to remove from the pan, which is great for beginning chefs, you won't get that nice brown kara that we all love about bread. And remember, when you're baking, color equals flavor. So you kind of want more color, but not too much, because I live with the next thing that broad requires is leavening. Leavening comes in two forms. Chemical, which is baking soda or baking powder, or natural, which is yeast, which is a living organism. And we'll talk a little bit more about that later, and then finally, temperature temperature does matter, and I highly suggest investing in an oven thermometer. They don't cost a lot of money, but if your oven is like mine and various upper down 25 degrees, which when you're making bread does make a big difference, and that's all you need to know, we're ready to cook 4. Gluten 101: Let's Get Stretchy!: goon wanna one before we get started, I want to talk a little bit about gluten because gluten is the building blocks of bread. But I think understanding the science makes it easier to fix problems should they happen. Not that you're gonna have any problems because you're gonna do great. So without getting too Bill Nye about it, protein the proteins and flower looked like this in this ball of yarn before anything before we add anything before the liquid. This is how the proteins are. And as we add liquid, they start to unravel. But they're still in this disarrayed hodgepodge kind of formation. The goal is to align them so that they form gluten, which is strong matrix that gives bread its texture and its shape. However, the more we need the about of the goon, the better the gluten formation is, which is what we want for certain types of breads. But it's not what we want for all types of breath. So if you under making a bread like the quick Irish brown bread or the pumpkin bread and you over beat it, you're gonna have a really strong matrix, a balloon, which is what you don't want. So for things like cakes and cookies and quick breads, you want the balloon to stay in that disarrayed form and underdeveloped to get that nice, crumbly texture that you want. But we for hard to your breads. We need it to line the gluten and make it stronger. So if you have ah, hardy bread, that's not quite looking the way you want. Maybe you didn't need it enough. Or if you have a quick bread that is kind of hard and tough, maybe you needed it. Or maybe you beat it too much. So there's just a little bit of gluten information for you, and that's my word on gluten. 5. Leavening 101: Rising to the Occasion: so leavening Wanna one like like in the same way that we talked about gluten. We're going to talk now about leavening, because leavening is what makes our bread rise. There's two different types of love eating. There's chemical leavening, a natural leavening chemical. Yet leavening is something that's used more in quick breads, and we're talking about baking soda and baking powder. Now. The way that these react is that baking soda is an alkaline, and when it reacts with an acid like yogurt or buttermilk, it creates carbon dioxide, and that allows the bread to rise. Baking powder has a little bit different combination, but it doesn't rely on the acid to make to create the carbon dioxide. These two are usually used in combination for the most controlled release of carbon dioxide , which allows your blood tries. The second type is yeast, which is actually a living thing, which is why you don't want to kill your kill your yeast. There's two different types of east. There's active dry ease and instant eased, and these air, not interchangeable. Active dry yeast needs to be proofed before you can put it in your ingredients. Now proof that the word proofing comes back comes from a long time ago where people released was not a shelf stable as it is now, so people have to prove that it worked and that I was gonna make their bread drives. So you still use that terminology today. So the way that the yeast works is the East react. The east eats of sugar to create alcohol and carbon dioxide, and that carbon dioxide creates little bubbles in the bread and it gets trapped in the matrix of the gluten. And that's what causes east the east breads to rise. So there's your little note on leavening. 6. Quick and Dirty: Irish Brown Bread: The 1st 1 we're making today is an Irish brown bread. It's one of my favorites, and I discover the recipe after I went on vacation to Ireland, and it is really easy to make it home really, really delicious. So as you can see, we don't have a ton of ing ton of equipment or town of ingredients, which was why this bread is perfect. So in this bowl we started with some holy flour and all purpose flour. The holy flower isn't necessary. You can make us with all completely all purpose flour, but I think it as a little bit of nice extra something something to it. So we're going to start by adding some butter, which we're gonna cut in as you would a pie crust. Now I'm using a fork if you want to use a pastry blender, or I've even done this in the food processor, using the dough hook and pulsing it, Um, we're not beating it. We're just kind of incorporating it so that it kind of comes out to a sandy consistency, which doesn't take long. It's easiest if the butter's at room temperature, because otherwise you might be having a fight with the butter. You don't want to melt. You don't want to completely melted either. So speed it down with a fork until it becomes like sand breaking up the chunks but trying to make a mass like like really have. All right, that's good. It's a lot easier to mix with room temperature butter. All right, so now that we've done that, we're gonna baking on. I wanted to show you a little bit a little check that my mom always told me. So I don't follow this all the time, but baking sort of tends to have lumps in it. You don't want to bite into a big lump of baking soda and anything that you make so put on your palm and flatten it out to get problems. So thanks, Mom, for that. Now, the baking soda is incorporated. We're gonna make a little bit of a well and add one egg. Jews slightly beaten some buttermilk. If you don't want to buy the whole thing of buttermilk at home, you can make your own by adding some vinegar to regular milk, letting it set for a little bit too Colonel and then some honey, Now when you're using. When you're making something that doesn't have a ton of ingredients, it's really important to use good quality ingredients. Um, sometimes they're a little bit more expensive, but especially this. The honey combined with the whole wheat flour really gives it in a sweet taste. And so you want to use some some decent honey. You can leave Sue BLM, and so then with a wooden spoon just given a mix until it's all combined. Now, like I was saying, with the gluten, you don't want to over mix this because then you'll have a tough bread. And this is supposed to be nice and almost cakey like, and we're gonna top this in one sack with some oatmeal just cause I think that it's really pretty another. But you can use any kind of sesame seeds or pumpkin seeds or even nuts if you want. You can even add enough to set the batter if you really want to, so don't worry about getting all the lumps out because they'll eventually come out Now. As you can see, I have flowered my my pan. I'm also using ceramic, even though metal would be better ceramic for things like this I like to use because I think it's prettier and you can also serve it in ceramic, where his metal. Because of the residual cooking, you'd have to remove it right away. So get it all in there. Where is your short changing yourself gonna use? Give it a good evening, even it out. And then we're gonna Sprinkle a little bit oatmeal on top, just for just for texture. It looks really pretty when it's all finished. Give it a tap to get all the air bubbles out, and it's ready for the oven that's gonna bake for 40 to 45 minutes, depending on your oven. If you use a glass pan like I just did, you wanna reduce the oven temperature about 25 degrees. Keep an eye on it because one of the best piece of equipment is you. Your your sense of sight, taste, smell, touch all of your senses. We'll tell you if it's done and remember that color is flavor, so you want to look for a nice golden brown color, and then so 40 to 45 minutes is just to gauge and you can tell that it's done by its color . Remember, your you are your best equipment and then use a tester to make sure that it comes out clean with no residue on it. This is a kebab skewer, so you can use whatever you have laying around the house. You're gonna leave it in the pan to cool for about 10 minutes before turning it up. 7. Cheater's Yeast: Beer Bread: So the next Friday we're gonna make is everyone's favorite cause. It's really, really easy and requires really nobles. Severe broad. So in this bag we have broad flower and baking powder. Now bread, flour. Not everyone has on hand, but I found it. Ah, handy trick is you can make your own broad flower out of all purpose fire fire by buying something called vital wheat gluten and use one teaspoon per one cup of all purpose flour and you have bread, flour, and what that does is it just adds more protein to it. So in this bag, we have 1/2 teaspoon assault, 4.5 teaspoons of baking powder and three cups of broad flower and the yeast and the beer and the baking powder are gonna work to create toe. Lighten up the bread a little bit, Um, and I'm gonna add some brown sugar. And before I had the beer, I want to talk about it for a second because, like when you're cooking with wine, whatever beer you want you use, you wanted to have good flavour. So don't use anything that you drank in college because that you don't want your taste like that, I decided to go with the porter. So, like a porter or stout or lager or something really heavy. It's great flavor, and you could make it seasonal by adding, by making like a pumpkin beer and the fall and or and it's also really, it's really versatile. You could add herbs to this if you want. I doubted fresh parsley, parsley to mind before or dried herbs just a really easy of her. Still Brun. But right, get ready to get your hands dirty because it's a little bit of a mess. We're gonna add beer bag. Give it is up. Make sure that it's well sealed or you'll regret it leader and mix it up like this, so mix it around and trying to get all the flour incorporated. You can do this in a bowl, but that's less fun, I think, and more more messy after. So get your hands dirty, make sure that it's all mixed well, and I have here a prepared metal pan actually used sugar rather than flour to coat it, because I think the sugar gives it a nice crust and also because I'm using a vanilla Porter rider stop that. That sounded God. If you don't want a nice shirt across the new Guinea's flower or you can use just oil, strip it out. And if you don't have, you can probably be this any Which way, probably drop it as muffins. You can probably put it in a pie plate and then have kind of like scones if I had a So use your hands and just let it fill Japan, all right, and now you're going to stick it in the oven, UH, 300 a few degrees for about an hour until it gets nice and golden brown. So here we have our finished loaf of beer bread, which is delicious. Warm out of the oven slathered with some butter, as aside to soups or stews, were just paired with your favorite beer. 8. Flour Power: Rustic White Loaf: all right, Next up, we have a rustic white loaf. Now this takes a little bit more time in a little bit more love. But I assure you it's worth the effort. So the first thing we have to do is proof. He's like I said before, back in the day, the East was you had proved that the yeast was so good. So what we're doing here is we have some lukewarm water. You shouldn't have it more than 110 degrees, but I just like to make sure that it's warm to the touch but not burning my hand. So to that we're gonna add a teaspoon, an eighth, the active dry yeast and two teaspoons sugar. Give it a little stir and then put it in a warm place to get started for about 5 to 7 minutes. I like to put mine in the microwave because I think that it traps in heat really well on I live in Chicago, so it's pretty drafty in my apartment for 57 minutes. Now that we are sure that the yeast is active, we're gonna add it to our bowl of flour. About two and 3/4 cups, flour in here. And, um, we can always add more if necessary. Make sure you get all the sugar of the east. Probable. Start slowly to not make too much mess. And you're mr until the flower starts to come away from the sides, which it actually does pretty quickly. It looks messy. Adoree. It will look the way it's supposed to look. Trust yourself. You can do it so flour your work surface Not too much because you don't want to be overly Farrelly flower flowered. And now we're gonna start needing this, so to need it. You wanna use the heel of your hand and push it away from you gonna push away turning 90 degrees, push away. You keep doing that Eventually it'll all come together. So you want to do this for about five minutes, initially the first time, so you can see it's already becoming less craggy looking. Now I usually listen to music when I cook and so you can time it by how many songs past This would usually be about two songs and you're done. So once about five minutes or two songs have passed. You wanna let the dough sit for about five minutes while you go rinse out your bowl. Um, as you're needing, just I keep outing flower just to make it not stick, but don't add too much cause then it'll fall apart. So let it rest and go rinse out your balls, OK? Now that you've let it sit for five minutes and you're bull is all clean and oiled, you're gonna need it for three more minutes. Now that you've been needing this for the final three minutes, you're gonna add it to your well oiled bowl. Kind of given a mix of the whole thing that's coated in oil, had it for good luck and then cover it with plastic or out imported in a warm place to rise about 1 to 2 hours. I like to put mine in my oven because my oven stays nice and warm from some residual gas. It's hasn't killed me yet, so through I'm gonna put it and we'll see you in another hour to an hour and 1/2 now that it's been about an hour and 1/2 to 2 hours and you're bread has gotten puffy and roughly doubled in size. You're going Teoh not gonna need it anymore. Rather, we're gonna shape it into kind of a log. Put it on a baking pan filled with either cornmeal er, semolina to give it that nice crust on the bottom. Now, if it's too sticky, then you can add a little bit more flour. But it shouldn't get any because you took care of the stickiness factor beforehand. So we're gonna put this in the oven, and there's a little bit of a trick to it, but the bottom of it, we're gonna put this on the middle shelf of the oven at 450 degrees. But underneath that shelf we're gonna put a roasting pan or baking pan filled with about one inch of water. And what that's going to do is it's gonna steam steam, keep, create steam in the oven and give it a really nice crispy crust before this goes and we're going to slash it and paint it with some cold water. So in a little under three hours, with a little bit of blood, sweat and hopefully not too many tears, we have finished loaf of white bread. You can tell that it's done when It has this nice golden color, and it makes a hollow sound when you tap it like that. One way that you can also ensure the extra crispy crust on top of the water bath is to let it cool. Take it off the pan, leave it in the oven on top of just the great itself, cracked the door and turn off the oven and just let it continue cooling. But like that and you'll have a nice crispy loaf. So there you have it. You made your way from the easiest to the hardest. 9. Go Away Gluten!: Pao de Queijo: our last bread that we're going to make is actually a role. It's a good on a free roll called Powered Dick Asia. It's Brazilian. I'm sorry if I slaughter that, but it's gluten free, and I wanted to talk a little bit about gluten free flour. First gloom these days is public enemy number one, but there's so a lot of demand for baked goods because everyone loves broad. Good for baking at home can be done successfully, but you have to remember that baking is a science and it's very dependent on a lot of factors. So when you're working with a lot of gluten free flours, you kind of have to get the temperature right And the measurements. Roy in the moisture right tohave success, So gluten free flours can basically be broken up into three different kinds. Light meter light, medium and heavyweight, the light ones or sweet rice flour and tapioca flour, and there are more starchy and consistency were going to using tab vehicle flour, and that's the one of them. It's just almost like baking powder. The second kind is medium lee, and that would be like sorghum flour, brown rice flour or a gluten free oat flour, and finally you have heavy flowers, which are the nut flours. Lagoon flowers, so chickpea flour and flour, cashew or coconut flour are cashing flower. So when you're if you see an ingredient that uses multiple kinds of flour and make sure if you're substituting them out, go wait for wait to have the best success. And also remember to try and start adjusting. You might have to adjust the temperature, and you might have to adjust your moisture because, for instance, coconut flour sucks up moisture like a sponge, whereas others might not do that. So that was just a word on gluten free fire. So today we're gonna make these cheese rolls with sure, absolutely phenomenal. And there I'm using a mixture. You don't have to use a mixer. I find that the dough is really tough to get smoothed by hand with a regular wooden spoon. Um, but it can be done. They just have more character that way. So to the boulevard mixture, we're gonna add some tapioca flour, and I've melted one stick of butter with 1/3 of a cup of milk, 1/3 of a cup of water and a teaspoon of salt for half a teaspoon of salt. We're gonna add that turn on the mixer and slowly let it go nobita until it's nice and smooth eggs one of the time and beat him beating in between scrape down the sides. Now to this, we're gonna add cheese and rosemary. Now the combinations that you use, we're really just your personal preference. I'm using a Dubliner Irish chatter and rosemary, but I think that you could also make these, you know, add cheddar with, uh, taco seasoning or, you know, parsley. It's really just kind of your personal preference, but they're delicious either way, anyway, that you make them. I have dried rosemary and fresh cracked black pepper and the pan amusing for this, a silicone because it doesn't stick. And while it won't get that really golden brown crust, I think for the is that's okay. Ice cream soup for easy measuring make make. Make sure that everything is the same size, which means that all cooks with the same amount of time. So I scream. Scoop the ice cream, too, but I'm using is about 1/4 of a cup liquid per scoop so As you can see, the does a little bit liquidy, but that's OK, is it'll even out in the oven? I've also made these with a sweet version, using instead of butter using flavored olive oil and putting powered sugar on top just for something a little bit different. Get about nine to 10 muffins out of this roles like US 9 10 So these were gonna go in the oven at 375 degrees for 40 to 50 minutes, until they're nice, puffy and golden. Once your cheese rules are done and golden and beautiful and puffy like this, you actually want to take them out of the pan right away. Unlike regular breads were you kind of let it sit for about 10 minutes, and they're delicious and chewy and just kind of spread apart like that. They smell so amazing and the rosemary you can absolutely small the rosemary, so any herb that you add will make them absolutely fantastic. And these are so adaptable to cheese and herbs and spices have at it, and you really have to make them. Tapioca flour is available at specialty stores or gluten free stores or health food stores or actually, Asian markets is a big place to pick to pick them up. So definitely do yourself a favor. Favor. If you are gluten free or not, make these roles joy. 10. Conclusion: it's in our old friend experts. And it's time for all of you to make one of the four types of breads we need today. The Irish bread, the beer bread, the gluten free bread or the rustic loaf. Tell us why you picked what you picked and any modifications that you made to make your own . What kind of beer did you use and why did you use it? Why is that your favorite? What kind of herb combination did you make tell us and uploaded to the class page? 11. Bonus! Sweet & Simple Pumpkin Bread: The last bread we've got for you today is a little bit of a bonus, and it's not really part of the rest of their curriculum. It's pumpkin bread, and it's one of my favorites and it's good all year around. You don't have to wait for the leaves to change. The best thing about it is that it's very amenable to substitution is and you don't need a mixture. You can just use a bowl in a whisk and special like I've got here. So in the bowl right now I have sugar and brown sugar, about half 1/4 of a cup of brown sugar, 3/4 of cup of regular sugar for what we're going to do first is we're gonna add all of the liquids to this and then gently fold in all the dry ingredients. So now I have one teaspoon of vanilla and four eggs. We'll do our best, not make a mess. Now the reason that I love Fred's the quick breads like pumping broader zucchini bread or banana bread is that usually when you first read one of the ingredients ingredient list there usually tones the fat and the sugar, but they're really easy to substitute out. So in the original recipe that I'm making today, it called for one cup, 3/4 of a cup of oil, which just seemed like a lot to me. So instead I used half a cup of yogurt and 1/4 of a couple of oil. Apple sauce is also a great substitution, but it doesn't change the chemistry of of the bread all that much. The one thing to be careful is you can't substitute all of it out because you'll end up with some really gummy bread. And that's gross. So know what? That. So now we're gonna add the pumpkin and just, uh, give everything a mix, as you add it in that way blends really well. You'll end up with a huge mess. Oil man Yogurt. No, I used whole milk yogurt, but any you can use any that you have now. One of the things that makes this bread really unique is the spice mix, but I think a lot of times pumpkin bridges has a pumpkin pie spice and said we're using the actual whole spices, so we're kind of making our own pumpkin pie spice. So we have cinnamon, cloves, allspice, ginger and salt allow that. Like I said earlier, I eat this all year round. I definitely don't wait till the fall, and it's great because it slices well and freezes really well. All right, now that all the liquids air in and incorporated, we're gonna slowly add the flour, do our best to not make a huge mess. Could. But again, like I was talking about the gluten, the pumpkin bread. You don't want over beat it because you don't want to over develop the gluten because otherwise you'll get really tough pumpkin bread. No, we know. So I'm gonna change over to a spatula because then we can fold it a little bit easier. So when you fold, you wanna scoop along the edges and go through the middle so you're really just gently incorporating everything. And if it's got a little bit of lumps, it's perfectly OK because we'll cook out in the oven. Now we're gonna top this with some pumpkin seeds, roasted pumpkin seeds, but you don't have to top it with anything at all. You want to top it with some oatmeal. You could do that right? So that looks like It's really well combined, and now we're gonna add to our pan. No, I have sugared, buttered and sugared this pan. Like I mentioned before. You can use sugar, or you can use flour for sweetbreads. I like to you sugar because it makes this really nice. Brown tripper crossed what, and that removes very easily, but make sure that you butter it and then sugar it. Now, if that's in, spread it really evenly. Drop it down to remove any air bubbles and then Sprinkle some pumpkin seeds on top to garnish. This is going to go in a 350 degree oven for about an hour. Once again, depending on the type of pain used metal or glass, you might have to just the temperature a little bit, and you might have to adjust the time a little bit. So get use your senses. Use your duster when the tester comes out clean in the middle. Then you know your pumpkin bread is done once your pumpkin bread is done and your toothpick comes out clean. But it's in the pan for about 10 minutes before overturning it onto a cooling rack to cool . And then once it's done, you should wait until it actually cools before dating into it, though I know that that's going to be really hard, because it's gonna smell really good. Believe me, you have some really happy campers when this is done and there's your bonus, pumpkin Brosque.