I can’t believe summer is already over! It went by way too fast this year, but no wonder since I’ve been busy moving (I seriously can’t believe how much stuff we had crammed into our old apartment) and shooting my friend My’s book which by the way is SO much fun. A new experience for sure, and we’re nearly there. Can’t wait until it’s published next spring, I need to show you guys what we’ve been up to for basically the past 1 1/2 years 🙂 Moving has been such a transition. Life feels better and the new apartment is great, but getting back into work, learning how the light ‘works’ here is definitely a learning process. Living without a dishwasher is also something I haven’t done in a few years…
My and I found this amazing little farm shop called Kaggagård where we shot some pictures for her book. They had the most gorgeous pumpkins so I decided to bring a few home with me. I made some pumpkin puree, roasted pumpkin and these little cakes. I think I might make some soup aswell, and pie. What’s your all time favorite pumpkin recipe?
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Mini pumpkin cakes with caramel pastry cream and toasted lemon meringue frosting
Makes 4 small cakes
This is a delicious version of my favorite ever carrot cake, where I use both grated pumpkin, pumpkin puree and sour cream instead of grated carrot and apple sauce/peach puree. If you prefer using carrot or if you want to make a 6 inch cake, you can find instructions for the cake layers here and here.
- 150 g butter
- 1 3/4 cups grated pumpkin
- 3 large eggs
- 150 g (2/3 cup) granulated sugar
- 65 g (1/3 cup + 1 1/2 tbsp.) light brown muscovado sugar, firmly packed
- 180 g (1 1/4 cups) all purpose flour
- 2 tsp. baking powder
- 1 1/2 tsp. baking soda
- 1/4 tsp. flaky salt
- 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
- 80 ml (1/3 cup) sour cream
- 80 ml (1/3 cup) pumpkin puree (if you don’t have pumpkin puree, use sour cream or apple sauce instead)
CARAMEL PASTRY CREAM
- 150 ml (2/3 cup) milk
- 100 ml (1/3 cup + 2 tbsp) heavy cream
- 1/2 vanilla bean
- 3 large egg yolks (save egg whites for frosting)
- 4 tbsp. (55 g) granulated sugar, divided
- 2 tbsp. (17 g) cornstarch
- pinch of salt
- 1 tbsp. (15 g) butter
- 4 large egg whites
- 200 g (1 scant cup) granulated sugar
- zest from 1 small organic lemon
- Heat oven to 350°F (175°C). Butter a 30 x 40 cm/ 11 x 16 inch sheet pan and cover with baking paper.
- Melt the butter and set aside to cool.
- Peel and grate the pumpkin.
- Beat eggs and sugars until fluffy and lighter in color and texture, about 3 minutes. Add the melted butter and beat until combined.
- Mix flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and cinnamon in a bowl, then stir into the batter until just smooth.
- Add grated pumpkin, pumpkin puree and sour cream to the batter and stir until combined. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and smooth with a spatula.
- Bake for about 16-18 minutes, or until a cake tester comes out clean.
- Let cake cool completely before cutting out rounds with a 6,5 cm/2.5 inch cookie cutter. Wrap the rounds in plastic wrap or store in an airtight container if not using immediately.
- Pour milk and cream into a saucepan. Scrape the seeds out of the vanilla bean and add seeds and bean to the saucepan. Cook over medium heat until mixture comes to a boil. Remove from heat.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together 1 tbsp sugar, cornstarch, salt and yolks. Set aside.
- Put the remaining 3 tbsp of sugar in a heavy-bottomed saucepan. Place the pan over medium to high heat until the sugar starts melting around the edges. Turn the heat down to low and stir carefully with a spoon until sugar is melted and golden brown. Be careful not to burn the sugar! Stir in the butter.
- Very carefully pour some of the hot milk mixture over the melted sugar (it will bubble up so make sure to be careful as this stuff is hot!). Add the milk mixture little by little, then heat until everything is melted again.
- Slowly pour half of the hot milk mixture over the egg mixture to temper the eggs. Pour everything back into the saucepan and remove the vanilla bean.
- Whisk over medium heat until the mixture becomes very thick. Put the saucepan in a cold water bath, stirring every now and then to prevent a skin from forming. When mixture is cool, pour into a clean bowl and cover with plastic wrap, pressing the plastic wrap against the surface of the pastry cream. Put the bowl in the fridge until pastry cream is cold and thick – about 2 hours, but preferably longer.
- Put the first small cake layer on a small plate or cake stand. Spread with a layer of the pastry cream, then put the next cake layer on top. Repeat until you’ve used four layers for each little cake. Put the cakes in the fridge while you prepare the frosting.
- Pour egg whites and sugar in a clean and heatproof bowl (preferably stainless steel or glass). Put the bowl over a saucepan with simmering water. The bowl should fit snugly, and the simmering water should not be touching the bowl.
- Whisk the sugar and eggs constantly with a whisk until the mixture reaches about 65°C (about 140-150°F). If you don’t have a sugar thermometer, just rub some mixture between your fingers. If the sugar has melted and mixture is hot to the touch, it’s ready.
- Remove the bowl from the heat, beat until white, fluffy and cool to the touch with a stand- or electric mixer. This step can take about 5-10 minutes. Stir in the lemon zest.
- Cover the cakes with meringue frosting and toast the meringue with a kitchen torch.