Pumpkin & Cornmeal Cake

Pumpkin & Cornmeal Cake

This is fabulous served with Burnt Orange Caramel Sauce (see below). The amount of pumpkin can vary from the 8oz in the original recipe up to 14oz. The more pumpkin the more moist the cake.

1/2 lb (1 cup) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon finely grated orange zest
1 large egg
2 large eggs, separated
8-14 ounces canned solid-pack pumpkin (or fresh pumpkin)
1 teaspoon vanilla
6 3/4 ounces all-purpose flour (1 1/2 cups)
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup fine-ground cornmeal (not coarse, 3 1/4 oz)
Sifted powdered sugar for garnish (optional)

Orange Syrup:
1/2 cup fresh orange juice
1/2 cup granulated sugar
Yogurt or vanilla ice cream, for serving

Burnt Orange Caramel Sauce (see below)

1. Position oven rack in middle of oven, preheat to 350 degrees.
2. Butter a 9-inch bundt pan.
3. With a mixer and paddle attachment, beat butter, zest and sugar until light and fluffy- about 3 minutes.
4. One at a time, add egg and egg yolks, beating well and scraping sides of bowl after each addition.
5. Beat in pumpkin and vanilla.
6. Sift together flour, baking powder and salt, stir in cornmeal.
7. Add dry mixture to pumpkin batter in 3 stages, stirring gently but thoroughly with rubber spatula after each addition.
8. Do not overwork batter.
9. In a clean bowl, whip egg whites to soft peaks.
10. Gently fold whites into batter with spatula until there are no longer any white streaks.
11. Scrape batter into pan, smooth surface.
12. Bake until top is springy when lightly touched, the sides should be pulling away from the pan and a wooden skewer inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean- about 40-50 minutes.
13. Let cool for 20 minutes and then invert cake onto a rack to cool completely.
14. Dust with powdered sugar if you like.
15. For Orange Syrup: In a small saucepan over low heat, combine orange juice and sugar, stirring until sugar has dissolved.
16. Boil without stirring for 2 minutes.
17. Serve each slice with a drizzle of warm syrup accompanied by yogurt or vanilla ice cream.

Burnt Orange Caramel Sauce

2 oranges
1 cup sugar
3-5 drops lemon juice
1/2 cup water
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1/4 cup whipping cream

1. Have everything you need for the sauce at hand; it comes together so quickly itís best to give it your full attention.
2. Remove the zest from the oranges in long thick strips with a zester (do not use rasp) or peeler.
3. Juice the oranges and set aside.
4. Combine the zest, sugar, lemon juice and water in a small saucepan (The lemon juice helps avoid crystallization) Heat to boiling over medium heat.
5. As the water and sugar melt, they will foam in large frothy bubbles.
6. Never stir the caramel, but rotate the pan so the liquid moves the sugar around for even melting.
7. Watch the liquid turn from clear to gold; from this point it will quickly turn to amber and burn.
8. Remove the pan from the heat as soon as it appears dark gold.
9. Place a mesh strainer over the pot (this prevents spattering) and add the orange juice.
10. Add the butter to the pot and return to the heat.
11. Add the whipping cream and stir until any remaining lumps dissolve.
12. Strain to remove the zest.
13. Store in the refrigerator and warm like a baby bottle- in the microwave or in a simmering pan of water.

Makes about 1 cup.

Source of recipe: Regan Daley, FC, MC, and Glenys