The Moveable Feast Food Blog

The Moveable Feast is a Personal Chef Service that serves the Hampton Roads area of Southern Virginia. This blog is an extension of my web site and will go into more details about food and any food service industries. Any pictures and or recipes that are published here are all the property of The Moveable Feast unless otherwise noted.

Saturday, October 22, 2005

Play Day
I had a play day on Friday. I was inspired by all the other blogs that have been using pumpkin in their posts and that lead to the craving! I would have baked a pumpkin from scratch but I was without my car, so off to the skimpy pantry I went. Thankfully, there was an extra large can of packed pumpkin. Since I am such a freak about sweet breads (no not the organ meat kind) I had to make Pumpkin Cake. I have a the very first cookbook that I ever purchased and it's been the best book ever since. As much as I love the newer ones, this one is, "Old Faithful" as far as I'm concerned. I purchased the book when I was single and lived alone. I really didn't know much about cooking, but I knew lots about being a hungry college student. The book is The Farm Journal's Country Cookbook. The copyright date inside the book is 1972, but I think that I bought it in 1977 when I moved away from home for the first time.

So, I whipped open my aged cookbook and looked up Pumpkin and found a Pumpkin Cake. I don't have two cake pans anymore so I used my trusty Red silicon loaf pan. I mixed up all the ingredients and got a lovely surprise at the end. There's too much batter for the loaf pan. Cripes. You know me, I put it all in there anyway thinking it wouldn't matter. UGH. It didn't but it did. I set the timer for 30 minutes and checked out it. Looked pretty good so far, but I jiggled it and it was raw in the middle so I set the timer for another 20 minutes. Checked again, still raw. Nuts on top are turning a lovely deep brown color. Opps. So I set the timer for another 20 minutes. After 90 total minutes in the oven I finally gave up. I took it out. It was buldging on the sides and it looked pregnant. What a site.

I was really pleased with how large it was but the nuts on top were well past "lightly toasted". So I cut that bad boy up, slathered it up with some butter and ate a slice. Now where is Michelle when you need to have someone to gossip with, drink tea, and eat stuff from the blog???

Then being the brilliant person that I am, I mixed up another batch of Pumpkin Cake and this time I learned from my mistakes! I baked the batter in my Wilton mini loaf pan set. It bearly fit but as you can see from the photo, but they turned out nicely. So making a mistake turned out well. Now let's see about that chicken and the burning silicon pot holder episode! LOL!

Pumpkin Cake
1/2 cup shortening (butter will do well also)
1 cup sugar (I used the Splenda Sugar for Baking and that reduced the amount to 1/2 cup)
1 cup brown sugar (firmly packed)
2 eggs, beaten (give me a break, I just broke them open and tossed them in!)
1 cup cooked, mashed pumpkin or winter squash
3 cups cake flour (I made with AP flour)
4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 milk (any kind will do-I used fat free Lactaid milk)
1 cup walnuts chopped (I did actually use them)
1 tsp Maple flavoring (I didn't have any so used the 'ole stand by-VANILLA)
Cream shortening (or butter) and slowly add sugars, eggs, and pumpkin.
Sift together flour, baking powder and soda (get a grip! I threw in the baking powder and soda and then added one cup at a time into the Kitchen Aid-if you add more than a little at a time, that stuff goes all over the place!) then add alternately with milk to creamed mixure (yet grip again! I put the milk in the beginning with all the other wet ingredients).
Fold in walnuts and Maple Flavoring (okay so I don't really follow a recipe-add this stuff when you feel like it)

This is where I got stupid, I mean daring...
Pour into 3 (count 'em 3) 8" greased round layer cake pans. Bake in a moderate oven (350) for 30 minutes. Cool on racks. (What a laugh)!

I took a hand full of more brown sugar and tossed that with a hand full of walnuts and mixed them together in a bowl. After pouring the batter into the loaf pan I sprinkled the mixture on top. Now, if you make this a layer cake it really shouldn't take 90 minutes. If you decide to make this a loaf cake, then you really need to be smarter than I was and use two pans. If you do the minis that aren't connected together, it might take 7 pans. So please save yourself lots of time and don't make the same mistakes, I mean experiments that I did.

Happy baking!!


At 10:12 AM, Blogger ilva said...

I love reading about your 'kitchen happenings'! I'm sorry for you but happy for me because it makes such nice reading! And I lkie the recipe as well, I will have to try it soon! Hopefully without mistakes..

At 1:18 PM, Blogger vlb5757 said...

You are so funny! I have been eating the large loaf non-stop since I made it the other day. It's getting smaller and I'm getting bigger. Yes, please do not make the same mistakes I did or your loaf will take 90 minutes to bake. Too much time! It is very dense and yummy though. I go everyday to look at your pictures. They are so beautiful. My friend Julie and I are planning on going to France next year to take some cooking classes. Maybe we should change to Italy.

At 4:28 AM, Blogger s'kat said...

I made pumpkin loaf recently too, and did everything in my powers to give the leftovers away. The temptation is difficult to defy.

At 6:43 AM, Blogger Nerissa said...

The loaf looks lovely. Has me eyeing my little soon-to-be Jack-o' for its flesh. Doubt I'd add the walnuts though. Sometimes I feel like I'm the only person in the world who doesn't like nuts in their baking very much. Seems to compromise the feeling of a pillowy sinking into the flavour and texture.

At 11:48 AM, Blogger michelle said...

Ha Ha Ha! I hate when stuff takes longer than it should because I decide to do something 'daring,' especially because this usually happens before I'm to take said dish over to someone's house and I end up being very late...and then with my luck it never turns out quite like it was supposed to! Oh, and I hope to someday see Darling Hubby on a trike - but do convince him not to wear spandex like Loving Boyfriend - it's scary! (as you've seen!)

At 1:50 PM, Blogger vlb5757 said...

Michelle, I am dying laughing now! I can't breathe. My husband would die if I volunteered him to wear spandex. He is Mr. Conservative! He is so stiff that it's funny. I love his Yankee ways but they crack me up sometimes.

I love nuts of any kind except for Chestnuts. I have just never gotten them. Maybe if I had Martha roast them over a fire for me I would love them then. My husband doesn't like nuts in his food either. Sometimes I am feeling very nice and will make his cookies or breads first without the nuts and then throw some in at the end and make mine. I always label the bags or containers "With" or "Without" so everyone know they can keep their paws off my stuff!

At 2:20 PM, Blogger Chris Lautischer said...

Your page is great. And the pumpkin has just made me salivate like there's no tommorow.

I love baking too. I got hooked on baking when I started selling Watkins products. I love the stuff especially the vanilla. If you want to take a look, check out and use associate id# 364407 if you are interested in ordering anything.

Keep up the blog I love it... and the beach you live near makes you luckier than the folks in Canada! :D


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