Thursday, 5 September 2013

Spiced pumpkin cake with orange icing

The theme for the latest Stamford Clandestine Cake Club was 'Cracking crop of cakes' - our version of a harvest festival, for which I made a spiced pumpkin ring cake with orange icing. 

I knew a lot of the members of cake club would be using apple, berries, plum, and other fruits, so I thought I'd go left-field with pumpkin. I love pumpkin and squash and was quite exciting at this bake. 

I did it as a ring cake, so it was nice and easy to slice, and would look good with the orange icing (colour and flavour). It was easy to make, reasonably, and looked pretty good once I threw some heads of corn at it for decoration. 

150g margarine
300g caster sugar
3 eggs, beaten
340g self-raising flour
225g pumpkin puree (I used leftover pumpkin flesh from last year's Hallowe'en, which had been frozen, and then I sieved to lose some of the water)
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp allspice

For the icing:
Icing sugar
1/2 orange juiced
Orange food colouring 

Beat the sugar until creamy. Add the sugar and beat until pale and fluffy - it won't be too fluffy due to the amounts. 
Add the eggs a little at a time, with a bit of flour if necessary to stop it splitting. 
Sift in the flour and spices. 
Fold in the pumpkin gently. 
Pour into a prepared ring tin. 
Bake for about 45 minutes at 180C (160C fan). 

Make the icing once the cake is cooled, adding as much food colouring as you wish. I went for a deep sherbert-type colour. I would have gone brighter, except I had no time to go to the proper shop for the colouring and had to buy some rubbish from Tesco, which needed so much adding in order to get the right colour that I was worried about the quantities. 

My icing technique needed a bit of refinement, admittedly. But on the whole I achieved the look I was aiming for. 

I would add more spices next time. The pumpkin flavour was subtle and fragrant, and the orange icing was a bit special. One cake club member asked if I had used custard powder. I didn't, I promise. 

Dodgy icing technique. 

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