Wednesday, April 2, 2008

I'm Not Daring Baker Material

I love the blogs from you who belong to the Daring Bakers -- the photos of the amazing cakes, pies, tarts, and breads you all turn out are so impressive! I don't think I'll ever belong in a class with you chics.

I'm not a baker, but today I did make my first attempt at a layer cake, just for haha's. It's Pumpkin Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting, from an old issue of Cooks Country. Before I talk about the cake, I just want to say how much I love that magazine! I think they must test to the never ending because I've been receiving it for about a year and I've never had a recipe 'bomb' on me.

Any hooo, we love pumpkin around here, so I decided to play Becky Home'Ecky (my mom always used to say that) and whip up a yummy dessert for this evening (instead of going to the gym. Maybe I'll run outside later.). Following the directions is easy enough of course, and the cakes came together just fine. I get in to trouble when I start to frost things. I end up with crumbs all in my frosting, I always have bald spots, and usually I have to go change my shirt afterwards because I make a total mess of myself!!! Also, I love to garnish, but what was I supposed to do with this? Plop a pumpkin on top? A knob of ginger? So what I have is a plain old cake. Oh well. I cut myself a slice, poured a glass of skim milk, and nibbled away.

It's moist and delicious (it oughta be, it has 4 eggs and a cup of oil!) as is, but my oldest thought it would benefit from a handful of chocolate chips. If I ever followed his advice, I would bake it in a 9x13 pan and leave off the icing - more like a snack cake.

Pumpkin Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting
Source: Cooks Country Magazine, Oct./Nov. 2007
Serves: 16

2 c. all purpose flour
2 t. baking powder
1 t. baking soda
1 t. salt
2 t. ground cinnamon
1/4 t. ground allspice
1/4 t. ground ginger
4 large eggs
1 c. vegetable oil
1 2/3 c. sugar
1 (15-oz) can plain pumpkin puree

6 T. unsalted butter, softened
1 1/2 c. confectioners' sugar
1 (8-oz) package cream cheese, softened
1 t. vanilla extract

FOR THE CAKE: Preheat oven to 350. Grease and flour two 8" round cake pans. Whisk flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and spices in bowl. With electric mixer on medium high speed, beat eggs, oil, and granulated sugar until thick and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Reduce speed to low, add pumpkin, and mix until incorporated. Slowly add flour mixture and mix until only a few small lumps of flour remain, about 1 minute. Scrape batter into prepared pans and bake until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean, about 30 - 35 minutes. Transfer pans to wire rack and cool completely.

FOR THE FROSTING: With electric mixer on medium-high speed, beat butter and confectioners' sugar until fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add cream cheese and beat thoroughly. Add vanilla and beat until smooth. Turn cooled cakes out onto wire rack, then invert onto cake stand. Frost first layer, then add second and frost it. Serve!


Kitchen Goddess said...

Looks stunning. Good enough for the daring bakers I reckon. I could eat a slice right now.

Obsessive Foodie or Food Addict....You Decide said...

We LOVE pumpkin here also.....I made a recipe this past fall that were pumpkin chocolate chip cookies and they turn out real cakey. You have to keep them in the fridge and they are addicting.

Peter M said...

OK, what's wrong with this cake? Give yourself more credit...looks fine to me.

RecipeGirl said...

Looks perfectly wonderful to me. Of course you could be a daring baker!!

Sophie said...

I think this cake actually looks really good! I like how fluffy the frosting looks, and the cake itself is probably pretty moist - that's what the photo tells me :). Nice to meet you - just discovered your blog. I love the little "if you want breakfast..." picture you have on your blog :P!

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