Friday, November 16, 2012

PUMPKIN NUT LAYER CAKE WITH GINGER CREAM CHEESE ICING

1 stick butter, softened
1 1/2 cups firmly packed brown sugar
2 large eggs
1 cup canned pumpkin
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup buttermilk
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 tsp minced fresh ginger
1 cup chopped nuts, toasted (I prefer pecans, walnuts work well, too)
Ginger Cream Cheese Icing, recipe below

Beat the butter and sugar in large mixer bowl with mixer at medium speed until the mixture is light and fluffy.  Add the eggs, one at a time, beating after each until blended.  Add the pumpkin and beat until blended.

In another bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, pie spice, baking soda, and salt; set aside.

In another bowl, combine the buttermilk, vanilla, and ginger; set aside.

Add the flour milk to the butter mixture alternately with the buttermilk mixture beginning and ending with the flour mixture.  Beat at low speed after each addition until well blended.

Fold the nuts into the batter.  Divide the batter evenly between the two prepared cake pans and bake at 350 degrees for 18 to 20 minutes or until a wooden toothpick inserted in the centers comes out clean.  Cool cakes in the pans on a wire rack for 10 minutes.  Remove cakes from pans and allow to cool completely on the wire racks.

To assemble cake, place one layer on the cake plate.  Spread top with icing; place second layer atop the icing.  Spread the top and sides with the remaining icing.  For best results, cover cake and refrigerate overnight.

GINGER CREAM CHEESE ICING:
1 1/2 blocks (8-oz each) cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 tbsp minced fresh ginger
4 cups confectioners' sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract

Beat the cream cheese, butter, and ginger with an electric mixer until light and fluffy.  Gradually add the powdered sugar, beating until smooth.  Add vanilla and beat until smooth.  Chill for a half hour to reach spreading consistency.

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