When we lived in America people would get very excited about the fact that on 1st November all of the Halloween candy in the shops would be super-cheap. I’m not sure that you could make candy corn cheap enough for me to eat it! We don’t do Halloween on nearly the same scale in this country so we don’t have aisles of cheap candy in our shops but we do get an abundance of cheap pumpkins. Which makes me much happier, as I’m sure you must know by now – I love me some veggies!
The moisture from the pumpkin gives this cake a deliciously rich, fudgy, brownie-like texture without it being too dense or heavy and the spices and chocolate go together wonderfully.
I have quite a small bundt tin which I bake this in but you can easily double the mixture to fill a larger bundt or adjust the cooking time to bake it in a standard tin. You can make the pumpkin puree by simply blending steamed, roasted or microwaved pumpkin flesh.
375g pumpkin puree
50g light soft brown sugar
65ml flavourless oil
135g plain flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
2 tbsp dark cocoa powder
pinch of seasalt
1/2 tsp ground allspice
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
big pinch of grated nutmeg
handful of dairyfree chocolate chips (optional – but they add a bit of texture)
50g dairyfree chocolate
50ml coconut cream
Pre-heat your oven to 180°c and thoroughly grease your baking tin. If you’re using a bundt tin then it’s a good idea to lightly dust it with a little flour or cocoa to reduce the risk of the cake sticking.
Blend together the pumpkin, sugar, salt and oil in a mixing bowl until it is thick and smooth. Sift together all of the dry ingredients, to ensure that they are well blended and then briefly fold them into the wet mixture. Be careful not to over-mix it. Fold through the chocolate chips if you’re using them and then pour the batter into the prepared tin. Bake the cake for 35 minutes, until it has risen and a cake tester comes out of it cleanly. Turn out of the tin and leave it to cool on a wire rack.
Make the frosting by chopping up the chocolate and placing it in a shallow dish. Heat the coconut cream until it is quite warm and then pour it over the chocolate. Let it sit for a minute or two and then stir until well blended. Leave to cool and thicken to a soft spreading consistency before using to coat the outside of the cake.