Pumpkin Cake

Yes Halloween has just passed, but this delicious pumpkin cake makes a nice treat at any time during autumn and winter.  I really enjoy eating it at breakfast or afternoon tea, as it is quite a hearty and not too sweet cake. It stores well for about a week in a cool place. The recipe is inspired by the website Joyofbaking (www.joyofbaking.com), which you should check out anyway, it is a really great website exclusively focusing on (American) baking.

For one loaf, you’ll need:

  • 300g flour
  • 250g caster sugar
  • 150g melted butter
  • 3 eggs
  • a pinch of salt
  • a teaspoon of baking powder
  • vanilla extract
  • ¼ teaspoon of ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon of ground gloves and/or nutmeg(optional)
  • 80g of chopped walnuts
  • 80g of dark chocolate chips or 110 g of raisins
  • 300g pumpkin puree

In one bowl mix all the dry ingredients and spices together.

In a second bowl, beat the eggs with the sugar until foamy, then add the melted butter and pumpkin puree.

Bring together both the wet and dry mixture being careful not to overmix (or your cake will get a little tough). That’s it! Pop the batter into a paper-lined cake tin and bake for about 1 hour at 180°C. Your cake is ready, if a stick inserted into the center will come out clean (or with crumbs, but no wet batter).

Here are some additional notes:

The original recipe includes a layer of cream cheese filling into the cake. I tried it for the first time, but thought it didn’t really add anything, so I just prefer it plain.

For the flour, I often mix white flour and wholegrain flour (at about 2/3 white, 1/3 wholegrain).

I prefer the raisin option (which I usually let soak in some rum or black tea for an hour), but if you have as a gourmand boyfriend as I have, you might want to try the chocolate version. I choose a really dark chocolate bar (70% cocoa) that I coarsely chop up with a knife.

For the pumpkin puree, any American will tell you to just hop to the shop and buy a tin of pumpkin puree. Well, first it is really quite difficult to find ready to use pumpkin puree in Europe and second, making your own puree is really easy and lets you choose which pumpkin you want to use. I usually opt for a Hokkaido pumpkin, because of its great orange color and intense taste, but any other sort will work as well. To make the puree, I halve the pumpkin, remove the seeds and place it into a 200°C hot oven for about 30 minutes. If you pierce in with a knife, it should go through easily. I then remove the pumpkin from the oven and scoop out the flesh. Finally I mix the flesh with a blender adding a bit of water to get a smooth yet quite firm consistency. One pumpkin will usually give me puree for about 2 cakes, so I just freeze half of the puree off for a later use.




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