I really love autumn. There are rare moments when I really miss living in a colder climate – especially missing Bonfire night last night. I hope all my UK buddies out there enjoyed the fireworks, chestnuts, toffee apples, hot port…ahh all that autumnal-goodness. There are certain things that are inextricably linked to Autumn and pumpkin seems to be one of them. Sweet or savoury these gourd-like squashes are truly delicious. That being said, I traditionally wouldn’t recognize them in their sweet state – pumpkin pie for example is not something I grew up with…I’m sure really sure I’d absolutely love it if I tried it (but I’m willing to accept donations/recipes to help change my mind!) But I think I’m a step closer to recognizing pumpkin as a delicious dessert ingredient after trying out this fantastic autumnal recipe. I had a bit of a belated Halloween Party last weekend and decided to lull my guests into a food & drink coma – these pumpkin cupcakes being the icing on the cake (if you’ll pardon the pun)!
What you need:
- 2 cups cake flour (you can use all purpose but cake flour gives it a lighter & fluffier texture)
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1 tsp ginger powder
- 1/4 tsp grated nutmeg
- 1/4 tsp five spice
- 1 cup light brown sugar
- 1 cup caster sugar
- 225g room softened (room temperature) butter
- 4 eggs
- 444g tinned pumpkin purée
- Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F) and line muffin tray with paper cupcake liners
- In a bowl, sift the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, ginger powder, nutmeg and five spice together.
- In a standing mixer, using the whisk attachment, mix two sugars, butter and eggs until smooth.
- Change to a paddle attachment and add the dry ingredients. Mix until smooth
- Add the pumpkin purée and continue mixing until it’s all incorporated.
- Divide the cake mix evenly between the liners – fill each one about halfway.
- Bake for 20-25 minutes – the cakes will be done if an inserted toothpick comes out clean.
- Transfer to a wire rack to cool.
**For the frosting I used the same vanilla frosting recipe as with the Chocolate Button Cupcakes I previously made. Sprinkle the top with ground cinnamon.
These cupcakes are actually amazing even without the frosting, so if you’re not a big frosting fan (like me) then feel free to skimp or forget it all together. The pumpkin purée makes these cakes stay moist (haha sorry I know people really hate that word) but isn’t too overwhelming flavour-wise: it’s the mix of spices that really makes me think of Autumn when I make these cupcakes. Even if you don’t have a sweet-tooth, these cupcakes are worth making just to fill your place with the most comforting aroma. It’s like a giant snuggly hug…but in dessert form!