salted caramel pumpkin roll

pumpkin roll 0110

Pumpkin rolls are one of my favorite desserts and it kinda sucks because I only get to eat them once a year. For some reason it’s less acceptable to enjoy a pumpkin roll from January through October, but November? November is fair game. I think I’m going to make an effort to bring it back in 2015. This March, PUMPKIN ROLL BIRTHDAY  CAKE! You heard it here first, guys.

I took a big risk making this for Thanksgiving. We’ve talked about it before, the fact that Mr. Eats has a deep love for my praline pumpkin cake. I mean, I love it too, but I also like to not eat the same exact thing every year for Thanksgiving. This meant that a regular old pumpkin roll just wasn’t going to cut it. I needed to kick it up a notch. I

First thought? I know! Praline pumpkin roll! Which did seem like a good idea until I realized the praline would just crack off of the roll, assuming I was able to even roll the cake with hot, molten, drippy praline all over it. So I used my second thought instead: salted caramel.

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Initially I thought a beautiful salted caramel layer swirled between the cake and frosting would be gorgeous and delicious, and maybe it would have been, except for one small issue… You see, caramel is liquid and so it did what liquid does and oozed out… all over the counter. I really wish I had been able to snap a picture but I was too busy trying to fanangle my pumpkin roll and yelling “I MADE A MISTAKE” and “OH GOD NO” in the kitchen, so there was no time.

Back to the drawing board.

The solution, of course, was to beat the caramel IN the frosting. That way you get all of that salted caramel flavor and zero mess on the counter. Well, not zero mess. Pumpkin rolls are a bit on the messy side, but the mess won’t be caramel, so at least you’ll have that going for you.

 

 

This is the part where I tell you how to roll up your pumpkin roll without it cracking. And I would really love to tell you that, except that I’m 0 for 3 at the moment… However, I did some research (read: talked to some pumpkin-rolling masters) and we decided that I was most likely rolling the cake too tightly. So when you’re rolling, roll it loosely and gently and with care. Then say a prayer.

The good news is that if you do crack it, it will still taste just as good. And if you use some artistic liberty in your photos and angle the roll “just so” and crop out most of the cracks no one will ever know it cracked to begin with! Well, except the people who are actually eating it. Just slice it before you serve it and those dummies won’t know any better anyway.

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salted caramel pumpkin roll
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Serves: 1 10-inch roll
Ingredients
Cake:
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • ⅔ canned pumpkin puree
  • ¾ cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ cup powdered sugar
Salted Caramel:
  • ½ cup heavy cream
  • 1 teaspooon fleur de sel
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons light corn syrup
  • ¼ cup water
  • ¼ cup sour cream
Filling:
  • 1 (8-oz) package cream cheese
  • 6 Tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¼ cup salted caramel
Instructions
Make the cake:
  1. Preheat oven to 375F. Grease a 10 by 15-inch jelly roll pan and line with parchment.
  2. In a small bowl, mix together flour, cinnamon, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.
  3. In a large bowl, eat the eggs and sugar on medium speed until thick and foamy.
  4. Add pumpkin puree and continue to beat until combined. Stir in flour mixture and pour into prepared pan.
  5. Bake 10 to 15 minutes until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
  6. Dust a dish towel with ¼ cup powdered sugar and invert cake onto towel. Starting from the short end, loosely roll the cake until a spiral and place on a wire rack to cool completely.
Make the salted caramel:
  1. In a small saucepan mix the water, sugar, and corn syrup. Stir to combine.
  2. Mix heavy cream and fleur de sel in a small measuring cup and heat in the microwave for about 1 minute until it is hot. Stir to dissolve the salt.
  3. Heat over high heat until it reaches about 340F and is dark amber in color. Remove from heat and allow to sit for 1 minute.
  4. Carefully pour the heavy cream into the sugar mixture (it will bubble and spit), whisk to combine. Add the sour cream and continue whisking until it is incorporated. Transfer to a small bowl and set aside to cool completely.
Make the filling.
  1. In a large bowl, beat the cream cheese and butter at medium high until combine. Add the vanilla and powdered sugar and continue beating until light and fluffy.
  2. Add the salted caramel and beat to combine. (You could also probably just stir the salted caramel in for a more swirly effect but, whatever)
Fill the cake:
  1. Carefully unroll the cake, if it breaks just keep going, you've come too far to stop now.
  2. Spread filling onto cake leaving one inch un-frosted at the end and re-roll into spiral. Wrap tightly in plastic wrap and place into refrigerator to chill for at least 4 hours.
Notes
Once chilled, you can move the roll to the freezer for up to 3 months. Thaw roll overnight in the refrigerator prior to serving.

[ Pumpkin roll recipe source: Libby’s Pumpkin ]

[ Salted caramel recipe source: Baked Sweet & Salty Cake FROM: BAKED: New Frontiers in Baking ]

soft pumpkin cookies

pumpkin cookie 2

It’s Friday, so let’s keep this short and sweet, shall we?

These soft, cakey pumpkin cookies really don’t need a story or explanation… then again, they didn’t need any icing either, but I gave it to them anyway because… why not?  Look how pretty they are with their adorable little icing stripes.

To recap:

Soft.

Cakey.

Filled with pumpkin.

Covered in icing. (Optional, but way prettier)

If you’re still dying to read words, you can see words from me and many other talented bloggers over at A Periodic Table’s “Just One Question” project!

soft pumpkin cookies

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 25 minutes

Yield: appx 20 cookies

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter,softened to room temperature
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 1/4 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, and pumpkin pie spice. Set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, cream butter and sugars until light and fluffy, about five minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and add the pumpkin, egg, and vanilla. Continue beating to incorporate, another minute or so.
  4. Add flour mixture and beat just to combine.
  5. Drop tablespoon-sized cookies onto baking sheet, slightly flattening the top, and bake until set and edges begin to turn golden; about 12 minutes

Notes

If you would like to ice these cookies, I used my usual cinnamon-bun icing - Just take about a cup of powdered sugar and add a bit of vanilla extract (maybe 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon, depending on your personal preference), and just enough milk to thin it to the consistency of your liking (1 to 2 tablespoons of milk should do the trick) If it's too thin, add more powdered sugar. If it's too thick, add more milk. TADAA!

http://wee-eats.com/2013/11/15/soft-pumpkin-cookies/

apple cake tatin

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Now, I’ve never been a huge ‘pie’ girl.  All the rolling and cutting and par-baking and fussing… I just don’t have that kind of energy (generally speaking).  As ashamed as I am to admit it… when I do bake a pie, it’s often with the aid of a store-bought crust.   I know, I should probably just go kill myself now.  Especially when we have such dedicated bakers who make such marvelous pies and poor Ms. Natalie can’t be bothered to run her food processor for 30 seconds and wait for the dough to chill after rolling it out.

I should just throw myself off of a cliff.

So when apple pie season rolls in and you’re not a huge pie person but you still want to serve a delightfully autumnal dessert, what’s a girl like me to do?

Cake!

apple cake

FYI: I find that in much of life’s dilemmas, the answer is usually cake.

I spotted this cake ages ago on an episode of Barefoot Contessa, and it’s been sitting in the back of my brain ever since.  Just gnawing at my willpower.  Whispering from my subconscious to my brain, “make me…”  So, I did!

It basically ends up like a caramel apple upside-down cake, which isn’t as fancy as Ina’s title of “apple cake tatin”, but let’s be realistic here.  This is a caramel apple cake.  I’d bet it’s best served warm with a scoop of melty vanilla ice cream, but a cold slice for breakfast is enjoyable as well.

I mean, it’s healthy… “apple a day” or something like that.

Apple Cake Tatin

Ingredients

  • *6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • *1 1/4 Granny Smith apples, peeled and sliced into 1/2-inch slices
  • *1 3/4 cups granulated sugar, divided
  • *2 large eggs, room temperature
  • *1/3 cup sour cream
  • *1/2 teaspoon grated lemon zest
  • *1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • *1 cup plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • *1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • *1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • *Confectioners' sugar

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Generously butter a 9-inch glass pie dish (I used a cake pan lined with parchment) and arrange the apples in the dish, cut side down.
  3. Combine 1 cup of the granulated sugar and 1/3 cup water in a small saucepan and cook over high heat until it turns a warm amber color, and registers about 360 F on a candy thermometer. Swirl the pan but don't stir. Pour evenly over the apple slices. Stare in awe while it bubbles.
  4. In a large bowl, cream the 6 tablespoons of butter and the remaining 3/4 cup of sugar until light and fluffy. Lower the speed and beat in the eggs 1 at a time. Add the sour cream, zest, and vanilla and mix until combined.
  5. In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Add to the butter mixture and mix just until combined, being careful not to overmix.
  6. Pour the cake batter evenly over the apple slices and bake for 30 to 40 minutes, until a cake tester comes out clean.
  7. Cool in the pan for 15 minutes, then invert the cake onto a flat plate. If an apple slice sticks, ease it out and replace it in the design on top of the cake. Serve warm with ice cream, or at room temperature.
http://wee-eats.com/2013/10/14/apple-cake-tatin/

[ Adapted from Barefoot Contessa ]

m4s0n501

apple cider donut cake

Fall is full of apples, and apple orchards, and fresh-pressed cider, and hot apple cider donuts and fresh apple fritters.

For most of the country, at least.

The closest I can get is store-bought apple cider… and this apple cider donut cake, which is delicious, and not deep-fried, and still super full of fall flavors.

The original recipe calls for cooking sliced granny smiths in cider, and pureeing them, and adding that to the cake.  Since my stores apple selection could be described as dismal at best, I decided to replace the fresh pureed apples with applesauce, which also means you make this any time of the year, in any part of the world, because I’m pretty sure that even if you don’t have fresh apples readily available, you will still be able to find some applesauce.

I also added buttermilk to give it a nice, tender crumb, since anyone who may have tried to substitute applesauce in a recipe may know it can make things a little on the “chewy” side.

This cake is like a fresh cider donut, and since it has “donut” in the name that means you are allowed to eat it for breakfast.  And any recipe that allows me to sneak cake into my breakfast regimen is considered a win in my book, especially if you then cover that cake in a layer of sweet cinnamon-sugar.

This cake would be the perfect brunch item, providing you and your guests something to snack on while they wait for your turkey to roast, or it would make a delightful alternative as a Thanksgiving dessert for those of you who don’t care for pumpkin, I know you’re out there.

Apple Cider Donut Cake

[ Printable Recipe ]

For Cake

  • 8 Tablespoons unsalted butter, room-temperature, cubed
  • ½ cup applesauce
  • ¾ cup apple cider
  • ½ cup buttermilk, room temperature
  • 2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¾ cup granulated sugar
  • 3 large eggs, room temperature
  • ¼ cup vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

For Cinnamon-Sugar Coating

  • 6 Tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ⅛ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • ⅛ teaspoon salt

Preheat oven to 350 F and prepare bundt pan with butter or spray.

Put applesauce in liquid measuring cup.  Fill with apple cider to 1 cup mark. Stir to combine. Add buttermilk and vanilla to cider mixture and stir to combine again.

In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, nutmeg, and cinnamon.

In a large bowl or stand mixer, beat butter and sugars until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.  Add eggs, one at a time, beating to incorporate after each addition.  Add oil and continue beating until incorporated.

Decrease mixer speed to low and add flour mixture alternating with apple mixture (flour-cider-flour-cider-flour), scraping down the bowl as needed.  Remember to scrape up from the bottom too to catch any flour pockets that may be hiding down there.

Scrape batter into greased bundt pan and bake 35-45 minutes until a cake tester comes out clean.  Cool in pan for 10 minutes, then invert onto rack, coat with cinnamon sugar mixture (I sprinkled it over the top, then poured into my hand and rubbed onto the sides), leave on rack until it has cooled completely.

Store in an airtight container at room temperature.

Inspired by Serious Eats ]

cinnamon pumpkin bundt cake

pumpkin bundt 2

You may have noticed a few changes around here… if not, you might want to take a look around. Turns out that changing your site layout is harder than it seems… a bunch of my older posts are now, well let’s just say they are in need of some extra TLC. Moving things around a little bit, so I guess I apologize in the mean time until I get it all straightened out, or when I get tired and just switch back to the old format. Either one is equally likely, really.

pumpkin bundt 3

In the mean time, I’ve been needing pumpkin like woah. So I made this pumpkin bundt cake. I put cinnamon chips in half of the cake (I wasn’t sure if the BF would want them in there). So, I should say I put cinnamon chips in my half of the cake… I won’t tell you if I ate an entire half. AND YOU CAN’T MAKE ME!

What I will tell you is to please enjoy this cake with freshly-whipped creamcoffee-flavored whipped cream is especially delicious.

The cinnamon chip amount in the recipe is if you want to put them in the whole cake. Oh, and ignore that finger mark in the powdered sugar. It’s not really there. You’re just seeing things.

Cinnamon Pumpkin Bundt Cake

[ Printable Recipe ]

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 stick butter, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup cinnamon chips (optional, chocolate chips would also be delicious)
  • whipped cream, for serving
  1. Preheat oven to 350.
  2. Prepare your bundt pan with spray or butter (I like PAM for baking)
  3. In a large bowl sift together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt and pumpkin pie spice.
  4. In a separate mixing bowl, beat the butter and sugar together until creamy.
  5. Add the eggs, one at a time, and continue to mix until smooth.
  6. Turn the mixer to low and gradually add the pumpkin puree, scraping down the sides as necessary.
  7. Gradually add half of the flour mixture into the pumpkin mixture until just incorporated.
  8. Slowly pour in the milk and mixing on low until incorporated, then add in the rest of the flour mixture.
  9. Beat until fully mixed, scraping down the sides and making sure to get any flour that might be stuck at the bottom of the bowl and stir in cinnamon chips.
  10. Pour the batter into the prepared Bundt pan, smooth the top, then bake the cake for 40 to 50 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. This is exceptionally delicious when served with whipped cream.