Post-halloween pumpkin delight

Last week Rose had so much fun painting our pumpkin, and this weekend it was my turn for some pumpkin makes.

I had a really good hunt about for nice pumpkin recipes – there are so many great looking things to try. I knew that i wanted to go for something sweet and didn’t really fancy a pie so I eventually settled on a couple of recipes from my own cookbooks. Cakes! (you will learn that i like these. a lot.)

I first chopped up my pumpkin and chopped off the skin. When the paint got wet it did start to get a little messy and some of my pumpkin pieces were dyed a bit blue. I tried rinsing them and i hope we won’t suffer too badly. Rose ingests far more paint in a typical painting session and so far seems to be okay?! I’m sure it looked worse than it was (?)

For the first of my pumpkin baking sessions, I decided to make one of my favourite cakes, the River Cottage Pumpkin and raisin tea loaf. I have made this one a few times with courgettes and carrots, but never actually with pumpkin so this seemed a good opportunity to try it. I changed the recipe a little bit to make it more toddler friendly, halving the sugar and, to add sweetness in a gentler way, substituting some of the pumpkin for apple and swapping the lemon for a satsuma. I often try to reduce sugar in my cakes for little one, and it can have varying effects, but i was really pleased that this was absolutely delicious. I will give you the original recipe though so you can make up your own mind (the original is absolutely delicious too!)

I will admit to you this wasn’t a smooth baking session. After the blue pumpkin I managed to whisk the sugar into the wrong part of the eggs, then managed to completely forget the flour until the very last minute. Can I still blame baby brain 2 years later?? Happily everything worked out fine in the end and I learnt a good lesson on reading instructions!

cut up pumpkin and applesmaking a cakemixing a caketea and cake

If you want a go at making this cake yourself, you will need:

Butter for greasing
200g light muscavado sugar (I used 100g)
4 large eggs (separated)
200g finely grated pumpkin flesh (i used about 170g pumpkin and then grated a whole desert apple which took me slightly over 200g in total)
The finely grated zest and juice of 1 lemon (satsuma)
100g raisins
100g ground almonds
200g self-raising flour (i used 100g white and 100g wholemeal flour for some extra health!)
a pinch of fine sea salt (i left this out)
1tsp ground cinnamon and a generous grating of nutmeg

To make the loaf:

Pre-heat your oven to 170 degrees and grease and line your loaf tin.

Using an electric whisk, beat together the egg yolks and sugar for a couple of minutes until the yolks become pale and creamy.

Add to the bowl, the pumpkin (and apple if using that), lemon (or satsuma) zest and juice, raisins, almonds. Sift in the flour, salt and spices and mix gently until everything is combined.

Clean your whisk and in a new bowl whisk up the egg whites until they form peaks. Add a spoon of the egg white to the mixture to loosen it up slightly, then gently fold in the remaining egg white.

Spoon gently into your waiting tin and bake for an hour, or until golden brown and firm. Leave to cool slightly in the tin before turning out onto  cooling rack.

Put the kettle on and enjoy. mm.

This cake recipe is featured in this article here which also has some other good looking stuff to try if you are looking for some inspiration (although Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall is not very complimentary of halloween pumpkins – perhaps next year we’ll have a halloween squash).

I will be back soon to let you know what i did with the rest of my pumpkin. more nice things.

I hope you enjoy some pumpkin baking. Let me know what you  make. Or if you try this cake tell me what you thought.

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