Back when she was little, my daughter Rachel didn’t like pumpkin pie. For a minute or two each year, I would contemplate sending her to an orphanage a la Oliver Twist style, until she got so hungry that even my pie looked good. Honestly, I think I always just wanted someone to hold a bowl out to me and say (in a cockney accent) “May I have some more, sir?” Though no, I have no idea why they would be calling me sir. I have rather prominent boobs. Hard to mistake me for a guy. But I digress.
Now, she goes back and forth. One year she hates pumpkin pie and then another she’ll like it. Go figure. I think we all know a pumpkin pie hating weirdo though. I’m looking at YOU, Kim, you pepsi swigging pumpkin hater. So what can you do? Especially since it’s so hard to find an orphanage. Make something ELSE pumpkin flavored and refuse to let them have any stuffing, turkey or cranberry sauce until they eat something pumpkin. WHAT!? It seems reasonable enough to me.
Thursday we will be bringing meals over to the volunteer firefighters who have to work and one of the things I’m bringing is one of these cakes. The recipe makes two and who better to share with than the gentlmen who will come save my home from burning if I drink a bit too much Cabernet while I cook? 😛
This came from the Saveur web site. They are pretty much my favorite cooking magazine and this cake is one of the reasons why. This is moist, not overly sweet, thus perfect after a heavy meal, has a touch of crunch from crispy edges and the pepitas on top. I changed it just a bit. The original called for just plain mascarpone and I know my family well enough to know that unsweetened dollops of a creamy cheese wouldn’t work. I’m glad I changed it. The cake really is NOT that sweet so the mascarpone flavored with a touch of sugar and vanilla was a nice counterpoint to the cake itself. I also added more spice (and deleted the cardamom because I didn’t have any nor the cash to buy any) than they called for and I’m again glad I did. It could use maybe even a bit more than what I added.
You know the drill….
Pumpkin Spice Cake With A Creamy Mascarpone Swirl
- 3 cups flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 2 teaspoons cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon cloves
- 1 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger
- 1 1/2 teaspoons grated nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 4 eggs
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2 cups sugar
- 1 16 ounce can pumpkin puree (NOT pie filling)
- zest of one orange (I used 1/2 teaspoon of orange oil)
- 1 1/4 cups canola oil (I used vegetable and it was fine. I don’t like canola oil)
- 8 ounces mascarpone cheese, room temp
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 1/2 tablespoons heavy cream or half and half
- 1/4 cup pepitas
- Heat oven to 350. Grease and flour two 8 inch cake pans. I used 9 inch pans and this was still fine; made a nice thick cake.
- On a small bowl, combine the mascarpone, 1/4 cup of sugar, 1 1/2 teaspoons cream and 1 teaspoon vanilla extract. Mix well and set aside
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, salt, baking soda and spices.
- In a large bowl, combine the pumpkin, eggs, sugar, oil, orange zest and canola oil. Mix well.
- Add the flour mixture to the pumpkin mixture. Beat well until thoroughly combined. Divide the batter between the two pans.
- Dollop the mascarpone mix evenly over the two pans. Use a butter knife to swirl it into the batter lightly. Sprinkle the pepitas evenly over the two cakes.
- Bake at 350 for about 35 to 40 minutes or untila wooden toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean. Let cool in pan for about ten minutes, then turn out of pan to finish cooling.
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