I love fall. If I had to pick my favourite season, fall would win hands down. Crisp mornings, hikes through the bush and markets full of pumpkins, squash and apples.
I love fall baking too. Spicy flavours and smells fill the kitchen. We tend to gravitate towards cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and cloves, as these seem to be the flavours associated to this time of year.
I don’t know if I told you this but my mom makes the BEST pumpkin pie ever. It just happens to be my favourite flavour of pie. But I have to say, and mom I hope you’re not listening, that this cake might just have put your pie in the running.
I can’t believe I just typed that out loud.
I’m not kidding. This is one of the most moist cakes I have ever eaten. It has all of the flavours of a pumpkin pie in a dense yet light cake. With Candied Pecans sprinkled throughout. And Brown Sugar Cream Cheese on each layer?
Pure pumpkin bliss.
What’s your favourite thing about fall?
Brown Butter Pumpkin Layer Cake
*adapted from finecooking.com
* grease and flour two 6 x 3 inch cake pans, set oven temp to 350 degrees
- 3/4 cup unsalted butter
- 2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
- 1-1/2 tsp. baking soda
- 1-1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
- 1 tsp. ground ginger
- 3/4 tsp. kosher salt
- 1/4 tsp. ground cloves
- 1/4 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg
- 1 1/2 cups pumpkin puree
- 1-1/2 cups granulated sugar
- 2/3 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
- 2 large eggs, room temperature
- 1/3 cup buttermilk. room temperature
1. Melt the butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Cook, swirling the pan occasionally (butter will begin to foam a bit) until the butter turns a nutty golden-brown, about 4 minutes. Let cool while preparing other ingredients.
2. In a medium bowl, whisk the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, salt,nutmeg and cloves. In a large bowl, whisk 1-1/2 cups of the pumpkin purée with the granulated sugar, brown sugar, eggs, and buttermilk until well blended. Stir in the flour mixture just until combined. Gently whisk in the brown butter until completely incorporated. Divide the batter evenly between the prepared pans.
3. Bake the cakes until a tester inserted in the center comes out clean, about 35 minutes. Let the cakes cool in the pans for 10 minutes. Turn the cakes out onto racks, remove the pan bottoms or parchment, and cool completely.
Brown Sugar Cream Cheese Icing
- 2 cups dark brown sugar , firmly packed
- 1 cup unsalted butter at room temperature
- 500 grams of cream cheese, cold
1. Beat butter and brown sugar until smooth. Add cold cream cheese and beat just until blended. Cream cheese icing is easier to work with when the cream cheese is added cold.
- 2 cups pecan halves
- 1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
- 1 cup dark brown sugar
1. Mix together the pecans, brown sugar and cream. Spread over a greased cookie sheet and bake at 350° for 15-20 minutes, stirring once.
1. I usually let cake layers chill in the freezer for at least an hour before cutting. Then, using a serrated knife, cut both cakes into layers. You’ll have one extra layer to freeze for later or nibble on whilst you decorate.
2. Place a layer on your cake plate, then spread a thick layer of cream cheese frosting. Sprinkle some chopped candied pecans on top of the icing. Repeat with the next layer. Add the final layer and frost the entire cake.
3. Once the whole cake is frosted, chill for a few hours before serving. Sprinkle and decorate with the remaining pecans.