Before you dive into this post, please vote for my salt photos and pumpkin pancakes with a maple cinnamon greek yogurt topping over at MarxFoods, I would really appreciate it! ALSO, remember to send me your entries for Regional Recipes: Brazil by the end of this month!  The winner of the Tate’s Bake Shop Giveaway is KIM of MO’ BETTA!  Kim, please contact me with your mailing address!

Sometimes medical school gets in the way of my real life.

It imposes itself in all sorts of obtrusive, inconvenient ways.  It’s clingy.  Like a bad boyfriend.

Without even offering up any of the perks of having a bad boyfriend.  Like having someone to sleep next to at night.  I guess I could curl up next to my anatomy textbook.  But I’ve been using it as a platform on which to roll out my calves every night.  (And truly, that’s the most useful it’s been since I’ve obtained it.  Money well spent, I suppose?)  And as such, it causes me so much pain that I don’t really think it’s “imaginary boyfriend material”.  You know?


My point being that sometimes I want to do things.  Things like make pasta from scratch on a meandering Tuesday night.  Things like eat lunch at Le Bernardin.  Things like go to the Union Square Farmer’s Market on Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday.  Just because I can.

Except when I can’t. Like when I have an exam the next day.  Or when I have class the next day.  Or when I am exhausted from having to trek up to the Bronx to “see patients” and “physically diagnose” them.  Or when I have to study.  Which occurs on approximately any day that ends in “y”.

You see what I mean?  Medical school can be quite imposing.  In a severely unattractive way.  Totally not date-able.  Not for a million bucks.

Not even in exchange for a cookbook deal.  (Okay.  Maybe in exchange for a cookbook deal.)


Case in point.

I have a cousin (hi Mia!) who has a roommate (hi Nicole!) who does PR for all sorts of cool food-related things.  Like Bravo’s Top Chef.  For example.

I’ll wait while you hyperventilate just a little.  I know.  Me too.


Anyways. Nicole contacted me way back in November asking me if I wanted to go to a brunch hosted by Kraft Foods and Marcus Samuelsson in celebration of their new iPad app Big Fork Little Fork, which includes a whole slew of globally-inspired recipes and cooking lessons.

I said a loud and resounding YES because, really, meeting Marcus Samuelsson truly takes precedent over learning about cardiovascular disease (especially because our heart exam was so hard that being in class wouldn’t have made a dent in my abominable score).

Then, I looked at my schedule. And said a loud and resounding NO because on that day of all days, I was scheduled to see patients. And patients take precedence over brunch with truly swoon-worthy chefs.  Or so I was told.  By my mother.  She’s my voice of reason at times like these.

Nicole was sweet enough to offer to have Marcus video record himself answering any food-related question of my choosing.  (Notice that she specified “food-related”.  That’s how I know that she reads my blog.  I had many other questions.  None of which were food-related.  None of which were family friendly.  Look at Marcus.  You understand.)  Given that it is the holiday season and that there is tons of holiday turkey/chicken roasting going on, I asked Marcus for some tips for how to roast the perfect bird without having it be dry and gross and unappealing.  See the bottom of this post for his answer!

And then.  To console myself for not being able to make it to brunch and meet Marcus in person. I decided to take it upon myself to recreate the experience in the comfort and warmth of my own kitchen.

I made English muffin bread.  Soft.  Holey.  Delicious.

I made pumpkin pomegranate butter.  It tastes like Christmas spirit.  I break out into carols whenever I eat it.  Sophie has taken to wearing earplugs.  It’s a safety measure.

I made Marcus’s homemade peanut butter. It is the best thing on earth.  I shall never buy peanut butter again.  I shall probably gain twenty pounds from eating it out of the container with a spoon.  I shall have to hide it from myself.

And then I sat down to watch Marcus’s video.  It was an experience.  Let me tell you. One that I highly recommend.  Especially if you are hosting a holiday brunch yourself.  This bread combined with these butters.  Revelatory.  Life changing.  Do it.


English Muffin Bread
December’s Bread of the Month at the Artisan Bread Bakers Group

3 cups AP flour
1 tbsp sugar
1 1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp baking soda
1 tbsp instant yeast
1 cup almond milk
1/4 cup water
2 tbsp vegetable oil
cornmeal, to sprinkle in pan

1. Whisk together the flour, sugar, salt, baking soda and yeast in a large mixing bowl.  Combine the milk, water, and oil in a separate microwave-safe mixing bowl.  Microwave until it is between 120 and 130 degrees (about the same temperature as the hottest water from your faucet…warm but not warm enough to scald you).  Pour the hot liquid over the dry ingredients.  Beat at high speed for 1 minute.  The dough will be VERY soft and VERY sticky. It is supposed to be this way.

2. Lightly grease an 8 1/2″ x 4 1/2″ loaf pan.  Sprinkle the bottom and sides with cornmeal.  Pour and/or scrape the dough into the pan, trying to level it as much as possible.  Cover it with a damp cloth and let it rise someplace warm for about 45 minutes or until it’s just barely crowned over the roof of the pan.  Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

3. Remove the cover and bake the bread for 20-22 minutes or until it is golden brown and its interior is 190.  Remove the bread from the oven.  After five minutes, turn it out of the pan and onto a cooling rack to finish cooling.  Let it cool completely before slicing.

This has been yeastspotted!

Pumpkin Pomegranate Butter
Makes about 3 cups, adapted from Smitten Kitchen 

1 (29 oz) or 2 (14 oz) cans of pumpkin puree (about 3 1/2 cups)
3/4 cup pomegranate juice
2 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp cardamom
1 1/3 cup brown sugar
1 tbsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
juice of half a lemon

1. In a large saucepan, combine the pumpkin puree, pomegranate juice, ginger, cardamom, brown sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg.  Stir well.  Bring to a boil.  Reduce the heat and simmer, partially covered, for 30 minutes or until thickened.  Stir frequently.  Adjust spices to taste.  Stir in lemon juice, or more to taste.

2. Once cool, keep in an airtight container in the fridge.

I am submitting this to All Through The Year Cheer!

Homemade Peanut Butter
Makes about 2 cups, adapted from Marcus Samuelsson’s New American Table

2 cups unsalted, roasted, skinless peanuts lightly crushed
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1/3 cup peanut oil

1. Heat a dry saute pan over low heat. Add the peanuts and saute, stirring occasionally, until golden and fragrant, about 5 minutes.  Increase the heat to medium and add the cinnamon, brown sugar, and salt.  Saute until the sugar melts and starts to bubble, about 4 minutes.  Be careful not to burn the sugar!

2. Transfer to a blender/food processor and puree. With the blender running, add the peanut oil in a thin, steady stream, scraping down the sides as needed.  Puree until emulsified.  Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 weeks.

And here’s Marcus himself giving you guys some tips about how to roast the perfect holiday turkey!


You are reading this post on Eats Well With Others at https://joanne-eatswellwithothers.com. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to the author and or owner of Eats Well With Others. All rights reserved by Joanne Bruno.
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97 Responses to English Muffin Bread with Pumpkin Pomegranate Butter and Homemade Peanut Butter

  1. Joanna says:

    Marcus Samuelson made you a video. Has that sunken in yet? Squee!

  2. My, my, he IS a tasty hunk of man! It’s sooooo unfortunate that things like med school and WORK get in the way of being the 24/7 foodies we all want to be 🙂 Hopefully some day my work will involve being a foodie! Nirvana! I bought some English muffing bread at a local bakery and it was delicious, so I’ll have to try to replicate it with this recipe. And I’ll try the homemade PB– the Doberhound will enjoy it 🙂

  3. i still don’t know how you do this WITH medical school, amazing. i would have died to go to that lunch!!

  4. Mary says:

    That video is a treasure. I must, however, ask if you ever relax 🙂 The bread and two butters sound wonderful and can’t help but be delicious. Have a great day. Blessings…Mary

  5. doggybloggy says:

    I guess you “lost” my number – I am totally available to go to these events – I would not have any problem telling you all about it…..

  6. jenna laughs says:

    Joanne – holy mary. This is incredible!! I seriously don’t know how you do this and medical school either. Do you ever sleep? I have a hard time food blogging with just my full time job, which only takes up 8 hours a day. You win, girl.

    PS- this bread looks amazing. And I love that the pomegranate butter tastes like Christmas spirit. I know exactly what you mean.

  7. Kim says:

    Oh wow!! Marcus made you your very own video, which was really nice. It really is a bummer that you couldn’t see him in person, but your Mom was probably right. Hopefully they’ll be another opportunity like this one.
    In the meantime, you have this delicious bread to comfort you. Which, knowing my love of English Muffins, I’m going to have to make. And the peanut butter? Let’s not even get started about that because I would have no self control with that laying around. It would be perfectly normal to eat this for breakfast, lunch, and dinner right? I hope so.

  8. Sanjeeta kk says:

    You surprise me every time that I visit your site, Joanne. Never heard of pomegranate spread. Would love to try this. Lovely bread recipe.

  9. Lori says:

    My cousin makes this bread all the time. She always tells me to make it and I never do. I don’t think hers has almond milk in it. I really need to make this bread.

  10. dude. you are seriously awesome. this video is seriously awesome. med school is seriously not awesome, but this bread and jam and PB will have to make up for it. lunching at le bernardin is like an impulse buy on a fancy dress- so wrong, but so so right. if you need a dining partner, I’m there.

  11. Those homemade butters sound terrific! I love the cardamom and ginger in your pumpkin pomegranate butter!

  12. Ann says:

    You’re my idol, Joanne! This is amazing. I really want to make this bread. I hope that you have some vacation time coming up for the holidays. You need some rest!

  13. This… I just want to sink my teeth into! Love Chef Marcus! You’re a good person 🙂

  14. who cares abt those 20 pounds…golds gym is always there isn’t it?…I love the home made peanut butter…bookmarked!

  15. Nelly says:

    Dude. He made a video for you. And not only for you, but you in a demi-celebrity-with-fans-in-her-own-right way! You win the Fangirl Award! (and DAMN, the man’s a looker!)

    I would never have thought of mixing pumpkin with pomegranate. This is going on the Christmas breakfast menu now.

  16. You are going to be the deathy of me! Both of these spreads look heavenly! Poor Sophie, don’t blame her for the earphones!!

  17. How awesome are you?? VERY! That was great! The spreads look wonderful too!!

  18. Megan says:

    Wow. It is so sad that you had to miss the brunch… but what a consolation prize!

    The English muffin bread sounds fabulous, and I will definitely have to give it a try soon. I don’t know how you have time to make all this amazing stuff while in med school. I have a hard enough time fitting it in with just a full-time job!

  19. The Pumpkin Pomegranate Butter sounds perfect to pair with this yummy bread you just made. Love the video, how awesome.

    Just voted for you my dear!

  20. Rachel says:

    I’m making English muffins right now! I hope they turn out as good as holey and good as your bread.
    I’m sorry you didn’t get to meet Marcus. The video is great though!
    I bet the peanut butter and pumpkin pomegranate butter would make a heavenly sandwich!

  21. Amy says:

    Ha! See, we both have a little Marcus in our back pocket! You would have loved meeting him, truly, but that video is awesome. At his demo in SF, he talked A LOT about Thanksgiving turkey; the right and wrong way to roast the bird. So you asked a great question. I think it’s one that many people share.

    That Pumpkin Pomegranate Butter looks delish. I’d be all over that this morning if I had some.

  22. You make a really strong case for homemade peanut butter, that’s for sure!

  23. Swathi says:

    The English muffin bread looks perfect. I am in love with two butters. Awesome breakfast.

  24. janet says:

    This looks great, Joanne! I once made English muffin bread ENTIRELY in the microwave. It seemed so odd, but it worked. 🙂 Your butters look so wonderful and I am sure would taste great overtop my morning oatmeal. 🙂

    Here is a link to a microwave English muffin bread: http://allrecipes.com//Recipe/microwave-english-muffin-bread/Detail.aspx

  25. Jennie says:

    Joanne, has anyone told you lately that you’re AWESOME!

  26. Monet says:

    What a great post. Your english muffin bread looks just about perfect…especially with that pumpkin spread. I know that medical school can feel overwhelming at times, but it seems like you have found a balance (one that I truly admire!) Thanks for sharing, sweet friend. Have a beauty-filled Tuesday!

  27. Butters look grt…new to me…the bread is awesome as well…

  28. Victoria says:

    Ahhhhh I love your little love video from Marcus! That’s so cool! The bread and butters look awesome too 🙂

  29. elra says:

    Gorgeous and delicious !

    Happy holiday seasons to you and your love one Joanne !

  30. U made your own bread?? and butter ?? and a pomegranate spread?? I m so J of your morning breakfasts 🙂 Love Love the look of bread.Who cares abt the weight gains…its holidays afterall ..happy holidays!

  31. Kristen says:

    Darn that medical school! It’s such a shame that you missed going to that brunch, but what a treat to have a personal video to keep. Thanks for sharing it with us when you could have kept it to yourself, playing it over and over and over.

  32. pajamachef says:

    ummm this looks AMAZING! forget med school- be a chef 🙂

    just kiddin… kinda… 🙂

  33. Lori says:

    I am loving both those butters! The pumpkin butter is so unique and I love your twist on the PB.

  34. That Girl says:

    The amazing thing about life is I am just positive you will have another opportunity like this, maybe even a better one!

  35. Very cool to know PR people in the food industry…!!

  36. Hannah says:

    Amazing bread and spreads! While any would be fantastic alone, I can only imagine how tasty the combination would be… Yum! Seriously loving the texture of the crumb, too, it looks so light and airy.

  37. AAAAAHHHHHH! He made you a video!!!!!!!
    That is the coolest thing ever. Happy Christmas Joanne!
    Ps, great job on the bread and spreads – wonderful!

  38. I haven’t made English muffin bread in quite awhile. Thanks for reminding me how good it is!

  39. nico. says:

    that is AMAZING that Marcus Samuelsson is featured on your blog! And, that is such an awesome tip to roast the breast separately from the legs …. so obvious, I don’t know why I haven’t ever heard that or thought of that!

  40. I was just thinking about making homemade peanut butter!!! And now I’m sold!

    Great post, Joanne!

  41. YUM! You just totally put my breakfast to shame. These look incredible.

  42. You know the coolest people! And you make homemade peanut butter. I really hope we get to hang out soon 🙂

  43. Shannon says:

    ummm, marcus samuelsson made you a video. wow. you rule. and you make a mean pb & j 🙂 totally love the pom-pumpkin idea!

  44. Julie says:

    Thank goodness for mom and her voice of reason! And pass the peanut butter!

  45. Deborah says:

    I don’t know if I would have been able to pass up Marcus Samuelsson!! And I also could not pass up this bread or either topping!

  46. Katerina says:

    How many sacrifices we have to make in our lives, I wonder. This bread is so perfect. I wish I had this instead of the cup of milk I had this morning.

  47. Dawn says:

    That sucks you had to miss but this looks like THE perfect breakfast.

  48. Faith says:

    OMG, just look at the gorgeous nooks and crannies on that bread…I need a slice of that!

    Marcus is seriously adorable, how cool that he made you a video! So sweet.

  49. Shannon says:

    So so so so so sooooo awesome that Marcus made you a video.

  50. I told my husband, foodies are like rock stars. I admit, I was thinking of Tyler but you fit right in there. I know a rock star named Joanne. Do you think Tyler is jealous.

    Great butters – fit for a foodie rock star.

  51. Pam says:

    It’s too bad you couldn’t make the brunch but job well done on putting your patients first.

    I am loving the bread, peanut putter, and pom-pumpkin butter… they would make a wonderful breakfast; or lunch; or snack; or dinner. 🙂

  52. high low says:

    You rock! So great that Marcus sent you a video message, but even greater that you put your patients first. I can’t believe you’re in med school and still have time for this wonderful blog. Love your writing!

  53. sophia says:

    Marcus made you a video. That is freaking cool, girl!!!

    And Pumpkin Pomegranate Butter? I’m sure the bread is just an excuse for you to shove down a hunk of butter into your mouth! 😉

  54. Amy says:

    Look at you–your own Marcus video to swoon at in private. 😉 AND you’re sharing it with us?! I’ll consider it my Christmas gift from you!

  55. teresa says:

    what a lovely bread, and you can’t beat that homemade butter! i bet it smells amazing coming out of the oven!

    great video, he makes a lot of sense!

  56. Louanne says:

    Great video! Your bread and homemade pb are calling my name – I love that the pb has cinnamon. Oh, voted for you!

  57. Julie says:

    Seriously, Joanne do you sleep??? I am feeling like a real schlep!! My holiday time baking consisted of one batch of peanut butter balls. You go to medical school and run and still find the time to make these fantastic recipes. I so wish we were closer, I would stop over for a slice but it’s a bit of a jaunt from Nebraska to New York!!! Relax over the holdays, K?

  58. I’m not sure if I’m more impressed by the bread and toppings or the video that Marcus did for you! Both way cool.

  59. I think you should have volunteered my name to take your place at this Marcus event because med school becomes so much more manageable when you make it to fourth year (which will take you more than four years but who’s counting?). I’m going to try to make this PB. It looks fantastic!

    I got the meringue powder at a craft store (ie AC Moore). It’s SO useful like at key times when you want to make something that requires room temperature egg whites but you forgot to leave out the eggs. Highly recommended!

  60. Beth says:

    english muffin bread!!! OMG!!!! MUST. MAKE. IMMEDIATELY. also despite its inconvenience, i guarantee that some heart-disease-ridden patient will one day thank your mother 🙂

  61. Maria says:

    That pumpkin pomegranate butter sounds so amazing! Happy Holidays!

  62. aipi says:

    Didn’t even realize peanut butter could be made at home… just figured there was some elaborate factory process… thanks for breaking through that with a wonderful recipe… not to mention just loved how the bread came out. Like Marcus’ work… see him on FN quite often.

    US Masala

  63. Sigh…life does get in the way sometimes, doesn’t it? I think you made the best of the situation though- that bread with the butters looks marvelous. I’ve been cooking up all of my leftover pumpkins this week and freezing the pulp, so I think I may have to try some of that pumpkin butter- yum!

  64. theUngourmet says:

    How cool is this video?! I love your pumpkin pomegranate butter… and the English muffin bread. Oh, and the PB too. Heck, it all looks amazing!

  65. Miriam says:

    I love your kind of food! Have a happy holiday season!! Miriam@Meatless Meals For Meat Eaters

  66. Dana says:

    Not even sure of where to start with this one. Yum? I would love you to ship me all three of those things, please, and I will send you cake. Or my first born. Your choice.

  67. Debinhawaii says:

    The video is almost cooler than meeting him. 😉 The bread and both spreads look and sound amazing. Homemade nut butter is the best.

  68. so yummy
    bises from France

  69. Joanne! That is what I call a GREAT read!!!! I, too, am a wise mother like yours – but, sharing your passion for all things food, I may have given you different advice (like switch shifts with another intern!!!!). But, your mother knows best. That would have been HARD to swallow. However, with those kinds of “connections”, and living in NYC, you are bound to get another opportunity in the future. They manner with which you guided us into your brunch, sitting with you, plate metaphorically full, watching the video, was brilliant. You didn’t sing the praises of the pumpkin butter, but that was the one that intrigued me the most. It looks delish, too!
    Now, I have a question for you: is Union Square Market open year round? It sounds like it from your post. I could google that. We have a few year round indoor markets here (in Edmonton, Alberta) that are year round and definitely worth the trip… From the photos I have seen, it looked like it was an outdoor market. We have only been to NYC once – and it was for 6 days – but STILL did not get to the market. Believe it? I don’t. It is my one great regret. And the MOMA. We do plan to return in March. (Yeah!)
    Thanks for the company this morning, as I sip my coffee, enjoying you!

  70. Oh – and PS: no one likes a “dry breast”!!! right?

  71. Rachel says:

    Awesome photos, Jo Jo. Just voted for you. And you are my hero of the day for picking med school over Marcus, which is truly a heartbreaking choice. Have a lovely holiday!

  72. Reeni says:

    What a kind, kind man to make a video for you! Did you send him some of your scrumptious pumpkin butter? I bet he’d love to have some – I know I would! And english muffin bread? I need some of that too! What a treat. Voted.

  73. “lunch at Le Bernardin”
    ohhh I wishhhh T_T

  74. dana says:

    peanut butter, yum yum.The pictures are great.so is the idea.thanks.

  75. girlichef says:

    Yummy post 🙂 I don’t really know where to begin. Totall bummer about those patients getting in the way ;), but way cool that he took a minute to tape that for you! The peanut butter sounds killer- cinnamon!! And your bread looks way better than mine did. Happy Holidays, Jo 🙂

  76. Simply Life says:

    You are so impressive- how do you do this and medical school?!?!

  77. Joanne I want to make every recipe on here today! Oh man I think I’ll start with the pumpkin pomegranate butter and end with the pasta recipe below for dinner.


  78. I never know making homemade peanut butter is so easy until I read this post. Thanks for sharing! I will definitely give it a try. Merry Xmas to you and your family!

  79. Well medical school doesnt sound good in the first part but i know the smiles on the face of the patients , that lit up ,when u bring them the hope of releif or tell them that what they think was a spinal problem is a compressed nerve {oh so muc better n cinsidering ur dng general with a little of ortho thrown in medicine}, oh it sure makes ur day , brighten and worth it!!!

    Now before i go ahead ,can i say hiiiii to Mia {im Mia too , lets connect }and Nicole too , with hugs for a happy hol , i mean it ok , not for all those PR connections but i sure want to send some love their way ,but if she thinks i can come along sometime , i will never say no:-)))

    Well , im hopn u have many more to come and lods of cookbook deals too!
    And babe ,ur already the star , i mean Marcus doing this video jus for u babe!!
    Oh this is fantastic!!

    The butters sound fantastic and u bake beautifull as ever!!
    So looking forward to hearing star news from the best kid on the block {ok kitchen block sounds ok?}
    Happy holls with lods of love!!

  80. How cool to have that video! And, English muffin bread sounds like a something I really need to try. Love the cinnamon in the peanut butter too!

  81. tigerfish says:

    yes or no to the cookbook deal, he would have made it up to you 🙂 Awesome! Merry Christmas!

  82. Juliana says:

    Joanne, love the English muffin and the spreads sure sound and look divine…yummie!

  83. Lori says:

    Um, besides the amazing photos of the stuff, these recipes look over the top delicious! Homemade pumpkin pom butter and homemade peanut butter (with brown sugar)… yum!!!!!

  84. Love these recipes! Bookmarked them all!!!

  85. vanillasugar says:

    come teach me how easy it is to do homemade bread? i am still scared of it. i know i know, crazy right? and i have on my list to make croissants. when i go get over my fear i NEED to make croissants from scratch. they are like the hardest thing ever to make right? lol

  86. sweetlife says:

    how freaking cool…joanne..awesome, love it!! i would have passed on the patients, that’s why I am not in medical school..i adore the first pic!
    happy holidays

  87. Chris says:

    Ok dammit you just upped the ante. Celebrity guest spot on your blog? Really?

    Hmmmm who can I kidnap and video? 😉

    That bread looks so soft and inviting…like a pillow on which to lay my head. Face down. While chewing. Sleep eating, the next super trend in food world.

  88. I remember seeing this recipe on KA flour a while back. Love the look and sounds of it. And pumpkin pomegranate butter? Are you kidding me…can you send me some ;p. Happy holidays, Joanne! I’m so glad to have met you through our blogs XD.

  89. grace says:

    this post is full of unique stuff, but then that’s what i’ve come to expect from you by now. nice work, joanne!

  90. Laura says:

    Awesome!! Very cool about Marcus and I really like the bread. I always wanted to make english muffin bread but didn’t really think it would give such a great result.

  91. Very cute video!

    I am totally on an English Muffin kick lately – this looks great!

    Happy Holidays Joanne!

  92. Kerstin says:

    Wow, how cool!!! And yay for homemade PB – yum!

  93. Ooo thanks for reminding me about this english muffin bread!! I need to make it. Yours looks awesome!

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