Thursday, 11 October 2012

pumpkin, walnut and white chocolate loaf cake - we should cocoa




... another week and another event goes flying by and last nights was a Korean themed event for an international Gas company (it's not all glamorous you know...) and sometimes i'm not quite sure I remember where I left toothbrush... and i know I shouldn't complain because we're busy but I tell you now, I cannot wait to get my head onto my own pillow, in my own bed... 

... and it's all a little confusing because i'm supposed to be posting about British Egg Week but that was last week and I ran out of time... and this week is supposed to be British Chocolate Week... and i'm sure next week is British Something Else Week but i've no doubt miss-placed my weeks... i'd quite like a British Dom Can Sleep For A Week, Week... but i doubt that's going to happen any time soon... i'd probably have to lobby those big-wigs in Brussels to get that one passed anyway...


Pumpkin, Walnut and White Chocolate Loaf Cake
not only is it Halloween at the end of the month but it’s National Baking Week 15th – 21st October so I thought I’d take this opportunity to combine the two with this delicious, if a little unusual, loaf cake.

i know i've written about this recently but one of the ironic things about living in the middle of the beautiful Lincolnshire Countryside is that whilst I may be surrounded by nature’s bounty and that at this time of year, there may be pumpkins growing in the field next door, if I wanted to pop out to purchase a tin of pumpkin puree - something that’s readily available in every corner store in America, I’d find it rather hard to track down without travelling miles.  With the popularity for celebrating Halloween here in the UK ever growing and demand for Lincolnshire pumpkins going through the roof you’d have thought that some of the American baking traditions would have crossed the Atlantic too.  Pumpkin puree is used as regularly as we use carrots for carrot cake in the US and makes a wonderfully velvet addition to cakes, loaves and traybakes.  You can purchase it in some of the bigger supermarkets and of course you can order it on-line but failing that it’s pretty simple to make your own from fresh, which I did for this wonderfully moist and rich pumpkin loaf cake.


 For the pumpkin puree
1 medium pumpkin

For the cake
8oz self-raising flour
4oz butter or margarine
2oz ground almonds
2oz chopped walnuts
2oz white chocolate chunks
4oz dark brown sugar
2 eggs
4oz pumpkin puree

For the Cream-cheese Icing
200g full fat cream cheese
100ml whipping cream
5 tablespoons icing sugar
a little food colouring

- take your pumpkin, cut the top off and then cut it in half across the middle and scoop out the seeds
and the pith, then cut it into quarters

- lay the quarters, flesh side down, onto a baking tray with a little water in
-         cover with foil and bake for 1 hour on 200C 
-     
      - once they are soft, take them out of the oven, allow them to cool and scoop out the flesh
-         puree with a hand-held blender or a fork

      - place the flour in a large bowl and add the butter, crumble it together with your hands
-         add the chopped walnuts, chocolate, sugar and almonds and stir in

      - beat the eggs with the pumpkin puree then add this to the bowl – beat well together
-         pour into a greased and lined loaf tin and bake on 190C for 1 hour or until a skewer comes out clean

      -  cool on a wire rack before icing

      - for the icing whisk the cream cheese, sugar and cream together till stiff, then add any food colouring  of your choice - I’ve gone for a subtle pale orange but you could go as garish as you like – it is Halloween after-all!

For more info on National Baking Week go to here and for the best Lincolnshire pumpkins go to www.david-bowman.co.uk

i'm entering this beautiful cake into one of my favourite monthly blog challenges we should cocoa... usually hosted so beautifully by Choclette from Chocolate Log Blog but this month is guest hosted by The Hungry Hinny as the theme is pumpkin...


eat and of course, enjoy!

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