Monday, October 13, 2014

Vegan pumpkin French toast stuffed with pumpkin pie filling

vegan pumpkin French toast stuffed with pumpkin pie filling

If you are, have ever thought about becoming, or have known a writer, you will be aware of that special little thing that is coming up next month.

Yes. National Novel Writing Month, colloquially known as NaNoWriMo, that time of the year when closet writers break out of their self-inflicted creative shackles and put ass in chair to bang out 50,000 words of pure, utter shit (referred to as a “novel”) within 30 days. It is a caffeine-fueled feat of endurance comparable to a marathon. Most importantly, it is completely crazy.

And this year, I am going to win.

My attempts failed epically last year, as I lacked the discipline to even muster up 10,000 words, let alone five times that. But in my defense, I was going through some serious depression at that time and didn’t have the energy to go to school, let alone complete a challenge as taxing as this one.

Now things are different. Yes. The tables have turned, oh how they have turned.

To win, simply put, you must show proof of having written 50,000 words. You can copy-paste “baboon fart story” 50,000 times into the word count validator and end up with a “you win!” certificate along with all of the fabulous swag other, more honest winners get after their month of creative labor. 

That actually happened. Click to enlarge. source

But that’s beside the point. The point is forcing yourself to write with reckless abandon in large amounts to prove to yourself—not to anyone else, but yourself—that you can do complete such a daunting task. That much I have learned from past winners’ tales.

In a month’s time, I shall join them.

That said: there are some criticisms of the challenge-turned-movement that seem to crop up every year around this time. Most of them go like somewhat like “it annoys me that people waste their time writing shitty novels for an entire month. They aren’t even writers! It’s cheapening our sacred art.” While I, as a non-winner and hardly a participant, have no personal stake in these arguments, I still find them humorous. Who cares if it’s shitty? Writers aren’t asking the world to read their horrid first drafts, nor are they pretending to be seasoned professionals in need of immediate book deals and unending praise for their worthy martyrdom. Or maybe they are. But that would be the vocal minority, mind you.

Not to mention those “cheapening of our preshus art” arguments, which call to mind the formerly rare feat of the literal marathon, which used to be the sole endeavor of ever-so-brave and more importantly professional souls and is now the domain of the common plebe! How insulting!

my dad actually looks like brad pitt tru fact
My dad is not sorry for cheapening your art.

I think you get my point. Critics gonna crit, blah blah blah. And let’s all wrap this up nice and neatly with a cordial invitation for you—yes, you!—to sign up for this utterly stupid waste of a month and try to churn out a massive word document for yourself. Hopefully it will be fun.

And now let’s talk about French toast. 

Vegan pumpkin french toast stuffed with pumpkin pie filling
Aw yiss.

This is another thank-you-mother-now-let-me-blog-about-it recipe. I usually like to make my bread from scratch, by hand, whereas my mother is very much a modern woman who ain’t got time for that kneading foolishness and opts to use a bread machine. Which is completely fine. It still tastes pretty good.

Given her propensity for using that big white clunker of a kitchen device, she also has a whole cookbook dedicated to recipes you can make with that very appliance entitled The Complete Guide to Bread Machine Baking; and while she typically makes only about two or three recipes out of the thing, this season she broke through her own boundaries and make—wait for it—pumpkin. spice. bread. And no, it’s not basic at all. It is very delicious bread. Not too sweet or anything, but still much more flavorful than the typical white bread.

With an entire loaf of the stuff on hand, what to do with it? Make French toast, of course. I’ve always been meaning to make Love and Lemons’ vegan spin on the breakfast classic—now was my chance. I even slathered on a vegan pumpkin pie filling from the very same blog. No, I’m not obsessed. I’m perfectly sane thankyouverymuch. 

vegan pumpkin french toast stuffed with pumpkin pie filling
Heh. Kind of.

If you happen to want to make this homemade bread but do not have a bread machine on hand, fear not, for I have linked a very helpful tutorial on how to convert the ingredients to instructions. Or you could substitute another kind of bread, but where’s the fun in that?

Here’s the recipe.


Easy pumpkin yeasted bread

Makes one 1 ½ pound loaf


122 grams • nondairy milk • ½ cup

122 grams • pumpkin puree • ½ cup

50 grams • egg substitute for one large egg (e.g. silken tofu) • ¼ cup

28 grams • nondairy margarine, softened and cut up • 2 tablespoons

390 grams • bread flour • 3 cups

40 grams • brown sugar • 3 tablespoons

4 grams • salt • ¾ teaspoon

1 gram • nutmeg • ¼ teaspoon

1 gram • cloves • ¼ teaspoon

1 gram • ginger • ¼ teaspoon

4 grams • active dry yeast • 1 teaspoon

75 grams • coarsely chopped pecans (optional) • ¾ cup


If using a bread machine, simply combine all ingredients according to a manufacturer’s instructions and bake using a basic white bread cycle. If not using a bread machine, see this website for instructions on how to make a bread machine recipe by hand (a surprisingly easy conversion, you will see).

Pumpkin pie French toast

Adapted from Love and Lemons

Makes about three to four servings


Pumpkin pie filling

122 grams • nondairy milk • ½ cup

9 grams • cornstarch • 1 ½ tablespoons

60 grams • maple syrup • 3 tablespoons

122 grams • pumpkin puree • ½ cup

7 grams • coconut oil • ½ tablespoon

2 grams • vanilla extract • ½ teaspoon

3 grams • cinnamon • 1 teaspoon

1 gram • nutmeg • ¼ teaspoon

1 gram • allspice • ¼ teaspoon

1 gram • salt • 1/8 teaspoon

French toast

6 to 8 thick slices pumpkin bread, recipe above

122 grams • nondairy milk • ½ cup

20 grams • maple syrup • 1 tablespoon

15 grams • all-purpose flour • 2 tablespoons

7 grams • nutritional yeast • 1 tablespoon

3 grams • cinnamon • 1 teaspoon

Nutmeg and other warm spices to taste

Pinch salt

Coconut oil, for frying


In a small saucepan, combine milk and cornstarch. Whisk until well-combined. Add maple syrup, then bring to a simmer over medium-low heat. Whisk continuously until mixture thickens, about two minutes.

Turn off heat and whisk in coconut oil, pumpkin puree, vanilla, spices, salt, and maybe a dash more maple syrup. Let cool slightly before using.

To make French toast, start by whisking together milk, maple syrup, flour, nutritional yeast, spices, and salt. Soak bread in mixture while you melt coconut oil in a large skillet. Fry until each side is golden brown. Serve with a few spoonfuls (or so) of pumpkin pie filling.


vegan pumpkin pie french toast
Don't mind me, just pouring pie filling all over my breakfast.

In other news, I recently bought a brand-spanking-new cookbook to add to my collection: Vegan Desserts by Hannah Kaminsky of the Bittersweet blog! It is filled with seasonally inspired and breathtakingly original recipes. Really. There aren’t any pedestrian chocolate chip cookies in there. Expect to see some desserts baked right out of there soon.

In the meantime, we can sip our pumpkin spice and munch on French toast. 


Oh, and P.S. this blog post is barely 1,300 words long. That’s still over 300 words below the daily word count required by NaNoWriMo—1,667.

Life is tough.


  1. Pumpkin French toast, yummeh!
    Awh I love how you added the word count to this post, to show how much would be required, that's pretty sweet! :) I also got an e-mail about the Novel challenge, but sadly I do not have a story that would be of that length, I reckon it's an amazing challenge though, whether it's for a personal mission or just for a laugh :D Any writing exercises your mind to think in the way of a writer, bring it on!

    And maybe, maaaybe if we're lucky we'll get to read a wee snippet of yours at the end of it all? Best of luck missy! x

    1. Ha I don't think you'd want to see what I'll be writing. It will be complete shite by November 30. *However* someday maybe it will be palatable for the general public.... ;)

      Anyway glad you like the French toast!

  2. I never knew what the hell NaNoWriBlahBlahWhatever was, so thank you for clearing it up for me! It sounds like one of those things that I would have, in an earlier, less exhausted time of my life, been totally in to but these days, I'm finding that the creativity has been sucked out of my by, I dunno, life. I guess. Gosh, I am a real downer today. Let me try this again: HOLY SHIT THIS LOOKS REALLY, REALLY GOOD. I mean it. I have never had stuffed french toast, but there's no time like the present to start, eh?

    1. Thanks, you should totally try this French toast! It's not your traditional "stuffed" toast, I don't think, but it's still awesome in its own way. :) And it's okay to not be interested in nanowrimo, it's not for everyone. Glad I could inform you! :D