Wednesday, October 31, 2007

 

Pumpkin Gingerbread

 

Pumpkin gingerbread (Food styling / Karoline Boehm Goodnick; Photos by Wendy Maeda / Globe staff)

 

Makes one 10-inch cake

 

CAKE

Butter (for the pan)

Flour (for the pan)

3 cups flour

1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1 1/4 teaspoons baking soda

1 teaspoon salt, preferably fine sea salt

1 Tablespoon ground ginger

2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

3/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg

1/2 teaspoon ground allspice

1 1/4 cups coarsely chopped pecans, lightly toasted and cooled

1/4 cup chopped crystallized ginger

1/2 pound unsalted butter, at room temperature (2 sticks)

1 1/4 cups granulated sugar

3/4 cup firmly packed light brown sugar

4 eggs

2 Tablespoons unsulphured molasses

1 1/4 teaspoons vanilla extract

1 can plain, solid-pack 100 percent pumpkin (15 ounces)

 

1. Set the oven at 350 degrees. Have on hand a 10-inch tube pan. Brush it with butter. Line the bottom with a circle of waxed paper cut to fit it and butter the paper. Dust the pan with flour, tapping out the excess. Set aside.

2. In a bowl, sift the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, and allspice.

3. In a small bowl, toss the pecans and ginger with 1 tablespoon of the flour mixture.

4. In an electric mixer, cream the unsalted butter on medium-high speed for 3 minutes. Reduce the speed to medium and beat in the granulated sugar in 2 additions, beating for 1 minute after each addition. Add the light brown sugar and beat for 1 minute more. Beat in the eggs, one at a time. Blend in the molasses and vanilla.

5. With the mixer set on low speed, blend in the pumpkin until combined. The mixture will look slightly curdled at this point. That's OK.

6. On low speed, add the flour mixture in 3 additions. Scrape down the bowl often with a rubber spatula. Remove the bowl from the mixer stand. With a large spoon, stir in the pecan mixture. Spoon the batter into the prepared pan. Smooth the top with a rubber spatula.

7. Bake the cake for 1 hour, or until set and a toothpick inserted into the center is clean or has a few moist crumbs attached when withdrawn. The cake will pull away slightly from the sides of the pan.

8. Set the cake on a rack to cool for 15 minutes. Place a cooling rack on top, carefully invert the cake, lift away the pan, discard the waxed paper, then invert the cake to sit right side up on the rack. Leave to cool completely. The cake may be made a day in advance up to this point. Store in an airtight keeper.

 

TOPPING

1/2 cup confectioners' sugar

1/4 teaspoon ground ginger

 

1. In a small bowl, whisk the confectioners' sugar and ginger.

2. Sift the sugar mixture through a small strainer onto the cake. Use a serrated knife to cut the cake into slices.

Lisa Yockelson

 

Copyright 2007 Globe Newspaper Company.