Fall mornings always have a bit of chill in the air – even when you end up with Indian summer weather in the afternoon. When I have the opportunity, I take advantage of that cool morning air to enjoy a mug of hot coffee in my robe while checking up on the news/reading Facebook, etc. Naturally, I like a snack to go with my coffee on a relaxing fall morning and that is where this Pumpkin Spice Pull Apart Loaf comes into the picture. This easy-to-make breakfast bread is very similar to monkey bread, but it is laden with pumpkin spices and formed in a loaf pan to give it a beautiful – and fun to pull apart – look.
The loaf starts with refrigerated biscuit dough. You can use homemade biscuits, but I recommend chilling the dough before working with it. One of the advantages of working with refrigerated dough is that it is easy to handle, both because the biscuits are pre-shaped and because they’re firm when they come out of the refrigerator. You can use the flaky variety of biscuit on buttermilk (those seem to be the two most widely available types), but any sort of biscuit dough should work just fine.
The biscuits are cut in half – to make 16 thin rounds – which are spread with a little butter and generously piled with a spiced sugar mixture(tutorial), before being stacked and transferred to a greased loaf pan. The biscuits puff up during baking to fill the pan. The top of the loaf becomes crisp and crusty, while the center and sides remain tender and buttery. This is best served while it is still warm and fresh from the oven, though you can reheat leftovers in the microwave if you need to heat them up. I prefer them just as they are, but a little drizzle of glaze is a good way to sweeten them up if you want to create a sticky cinnamon bun-effect.
Pumpkin Spice Pull Apart Loaf
1 tube refrigerated biscuit dough (8-ct)
1/3 cup brown sugar
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 ground ginger
1/4 tsp ground cloves
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
3 tbsp butter, melted and cooled
Preheat oven to 350F. Line a 9×5-inch loaf pan with parchment paper and lightly grease.
Open tube of biscuit dough. Separate biscuits and cut each in half lengthwise, to form 16 thin biscuit rounds. Flatten slightly with the palms of your hands if the shapes are irregular.
In a small bowl, whisk together sugar, spices and salt.
Take one piece of biscuit, brush it with a little melted butter and coat in the sugar mixture. Place about a teaspoon of the sugar mixture on top of the biscuit, then dredge a second piece of biscuit in the sugar and place it on top of the first biscuit. Repeat with all biscuits, until you have a neat tower. Working carefully (or by separating the stack into smaller pieces), turn the tower on its side and place in the prepared loaf pan. Drizzle with remaining melted butter and sprinkle with 2-3 tsp of the remaining brown sugar mixture.
Bake for 40-45 minutes, until deep golden brown and completely set.
Allow to cool slightly before unmolding and serve slightly warm.