This is a family recipe that my mother found in the Oregonian newspaper in the 1960s. It was a favorite of Mrs. Pat Straub, wife of Governor Robert Straub. It’s pretty sweet, but there are no eggs, and it’s easy to make. It makes three loaves, which is great for sharing or freezing, as it travels and keeps well.
5 cups flour
4 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cloves
1 tablespoon cinnamon
1 tablespoon salt
4 cups sugar
1 cup oil
1 large or 2 small cans cooked pumpkin
1 cup raisins or nuts (optional)
Preheat oven to 350. Sift together flour, baking soda, cloves, cinnamon, and salt. Set aside. In a large bowl, mix sugar and oil and then add the pumpkin. Add the dry ingredients gradually, mixing well after each addition until there are no lumps. Mix in nuts or raisins or chocolate chips or whatever sounds good to you. Divide into three greased loaf pans, and bake for 55-60 minutes, or until loaves pass the toothpick test. Cool on a wire rack before serving.
No fall or winter holiday gathering is complete without this bread, and when I couldn’t join people during the pandemic, I would send a loaf of this bread instead. It’s also really great with coffee – enjoy!