Prep 25 mins
Cook 55 mins
This scrumptious cake can be made up as an 8" three-layer cake, or as 36 cupcakes. Delicious and decorative, this recipe is especially fun for Halloween through Thanksgiving, particularly with the orange cream-cheese frosting. This recipe is taken from Country Living magazine.
- 2 1⁄2 cups all-purpose flour, plus
- 2 teaspoons all-purpose flour
- 1 cup good quality cocoa
- 2 tablespoons good quality cocoa
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1 1⁄2 teaspoons baking soda
- 2 1⁄4 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 3⁄4 teaspoon fresh-grated nutmeg
- 3⁄4 cup buttermilk
- 1 1⁄2 cups pumpkin puree
- 1 1⁄2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 1⁄8 cups unsalted butter, softened
- 1 1⁄2 cups firmly packed dark brown sugar
- 1 1⁄2 cups granulated sugar
- 5 large eggs
ORANGE CREAM-CHEESE FROSTING
- 1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, softened
- 1⁄4 cup unsalted butter, softened
- 3 tablespoons fresh orange juice
- 1 teaspoon grated orange zest
- 1⁄2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 4 cups confectioners' sugar
- 1⁄4 teaspoon orange food coloring
- Heat oven to 350°F; lightly butter three 8-inch cake pans and fit each bottom with an 8-inch circle of parchment paper. Lightly butter the parchment paper. Set aside.
- Make the batter: Sift the flour, cocoa, baking powder, cinnamon, and nutmeg in a large bowl and set aside.
- Beat butter and sugar together in a large bowl with an electric mixer set on medium speed until fluffy.
- Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition, until the mixture is smooth and light.
- Alternately add the flour mixture and buttermilk mixture, blending well after each addition.
- Divide the batter among the pans and bake until a wooden skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean - about 35 minutes. Cool the cakes in the pan for 20 minutes. Remove cakes and cool. (For cupcakes: Heat oven to 375°F; place cupcake liners in standard cupcake tins and fill each with 1/4 cup of batter. Bake for 22 minutes).
- When cakes are cool, trim each of the layers. Place one layer on a cake plate and top with one third of the frosting. Repeat with the second and third layers. (To ensure that cake layers do not shift, cut three skewers to 1/4 inch shorter than the full height of the cake and insert them before icing the top layer). Refrigerate until ready to serve.
- To prepare frosting: Blend the cream cheese, butter, orange juice, orange zest, and vanilla in a large bowl, using an electric mixer set at medium speed, until smooth. Add the sugar and continue to beat until light and creamy - about 3 more minutes. Add the food coloring and gently stir until the color is uniform. Chill the frosting until ready to ice the cupcakes or cake.