This year the compost pile sprouted a couple of pumpkin vines. One yielded pumpkins big enough for jack-o’lanterns, the other produced seven pie pumpkins. A lucky thing because the two hills of pumpkins I planted on purpose produced only two, still green, struggling to ripen before frost. The compost pile pumpkins, glowing a deep orange, have already proved useful, and the recipe that follows used one of them.
I was hankering for a spice cake that would use pumpkin. I crossed up the oil, butter, sugar, buttermilk, and pulp mixture from a favorite zucchini cake with the flour and spice combination from a favorite spice cake and came up with a sheet cake to frost with lemony cream cheese icing.
One pie pumpkin ought to make one pie, or when cooked produce about two cups of pureed pulp. I ended up with about one and three-quarters of a cup, which is just a tad less than a standard fifteen-ounce can of prepared pumpkin. A couple of tablespoons one way or another makes so little difference that I don’t worry about it.
You may already know that if you don’t have buttermilk on hand, you can substitute soured milk, obtained by adding a few drops of vinegar to regular milk. For the amount needed below add a couple teaspoons of vinegar to the measured one-third cup whole milk.
Give this a try, and if you have a pumpkin cake you like better, and don’t mind sharing, send the recipe along.
- 2 cups flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 2 teaspoons baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1½ teaspoons cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon ginger
- ½ teaspoon nutmeg
- ¼ teaspoon cloves
- ¼ cup or one-half stick butter
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- ½ cup, tightly packed, dark brown sugar
- ½ cup vegetable oil
- 3 eggs
- 1½ to 1¾ cups pumpkin puree
- ⅓ cup buttermilk
- /3 cup buttermilk
- Heat the oven to 350 degrees and grease and flour a 9-by-13-inch baking pan. Line with parchment of you wish to turn the cake out.
- Sift together flour, baking powder and soda, salt, and the spices.
- Cream together butter and granulated and brown sugars.
- Add and beat in oil and eggs.
- Mix in pumpkin.
- Add the dry ingredients alternately with the buttermilk and mix enough to make a smooth batter.
- Pour into the baking pan and bake for 30-35 minutes or until a tester inserted comes out clean.
- For serving, dust with confectioner’s sugar, or sprinkle with cinnamon sugar, or frost with your favorite cream cheese frosting.