Pumpkin Cake

(Serves 24-48 depending on the type of friends you have)

2 C sugar
1 1/4 C oil (I use canola)
3 C pumpkin
4 eggs
3 C flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp allspice

Preheat your oven to 325. Stir sugar, oil, eggs, and pumpkin until well mixed. Sift flour, baking powder, cinnamon, and allspice. Blend dry into wet. Bake for about an hour in a greased bundt pan. (If you halve the recipe, bake for about 40 minutes.)

For the frosting:

1 C brown sugar
2/3 C evaporated milk (I used regular, though I think that makes it take longer to get to softball stage)
1 C powdered sugar
1/2 C butter

Mix all ingredients in sauce pan and boil on medium heat until mixture forms a soft ball when dropped in cold water. [Okay, here's where I try to make it less fussy. You're going to be boiling it for 10-15 minutes without stirring it. So once it gets going, you can ignore it (unless you've got your heat up way high--do not do that) for at least 10 minutes. Do your dishes or something. If you've got a candy thermometer or instant read thermometer, you're going to let it get to 235-240 degrees. Frankly, even as a cheapskate, I think a decent instant read thermometer is a worthy investment. It saves you from gross or wasted food, and it saves you from obsessing about whether your turkey or cheesecake is really done. It just makes cooking life easier. Anyway, if you don't have an instant read thermometer, give your frosting a good ten minutes and then take a bit in a spoon and drop it in a glass of cold water. If it falls/drifts apart, it's not ready and you should give it a couple more minutes and try again; if you can form it into a loose ball with your fingertips, that's softball stage. If you accidentally let it get to hard ball or the next stage where it forms candy in the water, oh well, glop it on your cake lickity split and call it candied pumpkin cake.) Alright, once it's to soft ball stage, take it off the heat, let it cool for just about 30-60 seconds and pour it in a bowl and beat it. You're going to beat it until it becomes lighter in color and creamy looking. When it gets to that point, get it on your cake as quickly as possible because it's cooling down fast and if you wait to long to--say--take a few pictures, you're going to have to glop/paste it to your cake (only a problem ascetically; still tastes great).]

For the ganache:

1/4 C cream

1/2 C chocolate chips (I used Ghiradelli 60%. It's a good way to get a fairly cheap, fairly good chocolate, though any old semi-sweet will do)

Heat cream and chocolate on medium low and whisk until chocolate melts.

Drizzle over cake.

I served this the next day and liked how the frosting sort of bled sugary-ness into the cake. I guess I'm that kind of a person.

Posted by The Tasty Cheapskate