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I was just scrolling through old photos and I realized that I never shared this recipe with you. *Gasp* 

What. The heck. Is wrong with me.

We love, love, loved this cake. It was the perfect size for the two of us. There was enough that we were able to enjoy it for a while, but not so much that it went stale. Or was  so big that we snarfed it more quickly than was reasonable in order to prevent it from going stale. Not that that ever happens around here. *Ahem*

Anyway, this is a great little cake, packing a lot of delicious, complex flavors from a generous amount of pumpkin pie spice. It’s a moist cake with a nice tight crumb that is really the perfect texture for a homemade cake – I’m not a fan of the spongy airy texture that you find in most cake mix cakes. My husband went really crazy for it and said it was one of the best cakes he’d ever had. The honey frosting is the perfect complement to the pumpkin-y flavor of the cake. These are flavors that you’d typically find in fall baking, but I don’t see why this cake should be relegated to only a few months of the year – the warm, comforting flavors of this cake would be perfect on a cold, snowy winter’s night.

Pumpkin Spice Cake with Honey Frosting

Adapted slightly from Everyday Food, November 2005

For the cake

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted, plus more for pan

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, (spooned and leveled)

2 teaspoons baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon pumpkin-pie spice (or 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon, 3/4 teaspoon ginger, 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg, and 1/8 teaspoon each allspice and cloves)

2 large eggs

1 1/2 cups sugar

1 can (15 ounces) solid-pack pumpkin puree*

For the frosting

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, very soft

1 bar (8 ounces) regular (or reduced-fat) cream cheese, very soft

1/4 cup honey

2 cups powdered sugar

1 tablespoon milk

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter a 9-inch square baking pan**. (Mine is 8×8 and worked just fine.)
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk flour, baking soda, salt, and pumpkin-pie spice. In a large bowl, mix eggs, sugar, butter, and pumpkin puree until combined. Add dry ingredients to pumpkin mixture, and mix gently until smooth.
  3. Turn batter into prepared pan, and smooth top. Bake until a toothpick inserted in center of cake comes out with just a few moist crumbs attached, 45 to 50 minutes. Cool cake 10 minutes in pan, then turn out of pan, and cool completely, right side up, on a rack.
  4. Make Honey Frosting: In the bowl of a stand mixer with the paddle attached, beat butter, cream cheese and honey until smooth. Slowly mix in powdered sugar. Add milk to thin if necessary, so that the frosting has a nice spreadable consistency.
  5. Spread top of cooled cake with honey frosting. Cut cake into squares to serve.

*Be sure to use canned pumpkin, not pumpkin pie filling. Using pureed fresh pumpkin is not recommended.

**You can also use a 9-by-5-inch loaf pan: Increase baking time by 25 to 30 minutes (tent loaf with foil if it browns too quickly).

I’ve said it before: I love all things pumpkin. It’s a bit of an obsession. It seems like every time I go to the grocery store lately, I pick up a can or two of Libby’s pumpkin.

Pumpkin bread is pretty much the epitome of pumpkin-y goodness to me. Even more than pumpkin pie, if you can believe that. I do love pumpkin pie, but I’m more of a cake person than a pie person, and pumpkin bread is like a cake that you get to eat during dinner. Wee! And you can have it for breakfast, guilt-free. Why? Because it’s pumpkin bread, not pumpkin cake. Heh. Perfectly legitimate breakfast option. Of course, if you were to slather on a nice layer of cream cheese frosting, it would be very cake-like… but let’s not blur those lines too much, shall we? It’s bread, and therefore, I get to eat a thick slab of it during dinner and still get to have dessert too.

This is my favorite pumpkin bread recipe. It’s moist and tender and spicy. It’s everything pumpkin bread should be! This makes two loaves, perfect for giving away as a holiday hostess present, or to your neighbors, or to bring in to work to make your coworkers love you… Or just keep them both for yourself! The loaves freeze well, wrapped in a layer of plastic wrap and then a layer of foil.

Pumpkin Bread

Adapted from AllRecipes.com

 

1 (15 ounce) can pumpkin puree

4 eggs

1 cup vegetable oil

2/3 cup water

1 1/2 cups white sugar

1 cup light brown sugar

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1 cup white whole wheat flour*

2 teaspoons baking soda

1 1/2 teaspoons salt

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1/2 teaspoon ground cloves

1/4 teaspoon ground ginger

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour 2 10-inch loaf pans**.
  2. In a large bowl, mix together pumpkin puree, eggs, oil, water and sugar until well blended. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and ginger. Stir the dry ingredients into the pumpkin mixture until just blended. Pour into the prepared pans.
  3. Bake for about 60 minutes in the preheated oven. Loaves are done when toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

*You can use 3 1/2 cups all purpose flour and leave out the white whole wheat, but it makes it a bit healthier and you can’t taste it. So if you have it, use it, but if you don’t, you don’t need to run out and buy a bag!

**You can also make muffins with this recipe, which I haven’t done yet, but the recipe should yield about 24 muffins.

This recipe is a bit of foodie kismet – it came up in my Google reader shortly after I came across the recipe for Autumn Harvest Chili in Better Homes and Gardens, and I knew the two would be perfect together. Chili and cornbread are made for each other, so it makes sense that an autumnal twist on cornbread would be delicious alongside an autumnal twist on chili. And I was right. I love cornbread, I love pumpkin bread, and now – I love pumpkin cornbread.

And if you decide to make some pumpkin cornbread, may I suggest some of this action:

Oh yes.

Mmm…

Gimme some of that!

Seriously, you guys. This is great cornbread. Perfect for pairing with any fall recipe.

Pumpkin Cornbread

From Two Peas and Their Pod

1 cup all purpose flour

1 Tablespoon baking powder

1 teaspoon kosher salt

½ teaspoons ground cinnamon

¼ teaspoons ground nutmeg

½ cups brown sugar

1 cup cornmeal (not stoneground)

2 large eggs

1 cup pumpkin puree

¼ cups olive oil

1 Tablespoon molasses

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees and grease an 8×8″ baking dish.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt, spices, brown sugar, and cornmeal.
  3. In a small bowl, lightly beat the eggs, and then stir in the pumpkin, oil, and molasses.
  4. Stir the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients just until combined, and then pour the batter into the pan, smoothing out the top as much as possible. The batter will be quite thick.
  5. Bake 30 minutes or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean. Serve warm.

 

I’m a bit obsessed with all things pumpkin right now, so I saw these pumpkin pancakes in my Google reader yesterday, I decided right away that this was what we’d be having for breakfast today. And we did. And they were fantastic! They’re spicy and wholesome and the apple-cinnamon-maple compote really takes them over the top. They taste like a plate of autumn. I actually forgot that they were 100% whole wheat at first, you really don’t notice it – they’re just as light and fluffy as you could ask for.

Whole Grain Pumpkin Pancakes

Adapted slightly from Honey and Jam, who adapted it from 101 cookbooks
2 cups white whole wheat flour (or unbleached all-purpose flour)
1 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/3 cup granulated sugar

1/2 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
1 tablespoons pumpkin pie spice*
1 1/4 cups buttermilk
1 cup pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling)
2 large eggs

2 tablespoons butter, melted
butter, to serve (and for pan)
Heat oven to 200 degrees. Set a wire rack on top of a cookie sheet and put in the oven.
To make the pancakes, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, sugar, spice and salt in a large bowl. In a second bowl, beat the eggs. Add the buttermilk, pumpkin, and melted butter, and stir to combine. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and gently stir together. Don’t over mix – a few lumps are fine. The batter will be very thick.
Heat your griddle – it’s ready when a drop of water sizzles and dances when dropped onto it – and grease it with butter. Using a quarter cup measure as a scoop, pour the batter onto the griddle. Cook pancakes until the edges begin to dry out and air bubbles start to break out onto the surface – then flip and cook a couple minutes more on the other side. Place finished pancakes on the wire rack in the warm oven, then repeat with the remaining batter. Serve with Apple Maple Compote

.

Apple Cinnamon Maple Compote

1 apple for every 2 people
Butter
Cinnamon
Maple syrup
Slice up your apple(s) (I only used one for the two of us). Heat an appropriately-sized skillet, depending on the amount of apples you’ll be cooking, then melt a generous pat of butter in it. Cook the apples, sprinkling both sides with cinnamon and stirring, until the apples are soft. Pour enough maple syrup over the apples until they’re just covered. Bring to a simmer and cook for a couple of minutes, then turn down to low and keep warm until the pancakes are ready.