there absolutely does not need to be a celebration going on for this cake to Go on.
the celebration is autumn. the time of year i fiend for at all times.
orange against glowing cranberry against speckled white, it's quite good looking.
if it was a boy..so handsome.
hunky even, as my mother would say. like a good looking, scruffy mountain man type wearing some kind of plaid and holding a shovel.
classic pumpkin cakes tend to be similar in their genetic makeup.
oil. eggs. pumpkin puree. spices.
sometimes pecans. sometimes cranberries. sometimes maple or chocolate.
always cream cheese frosting.
you certainly know about how good pumpkin and cream cheese are together so i won't go on blabbering about it. (MOIST.)
so let's do this, AUTUMN 2013. the coziness is ON.
get all up in some crunchy leaves and do your damn thing.
if you live in la where there are no crunchy leaves in sight (booooo, c'mon.), just go outside and dance around a little. in the night so no one will watch you.
2 cups all-purpose flour 2 tsp baking soda 1 tsp baking powder 2 tsp ground cinnamon 1/2 tsp ground ginger 1/2 tsp salt 2 cups sugar 1 cup vegetable oil 1/2 tsp vanilla extract 4 large eggs 2 cups pumpkin puree cranberries. some or many preheat oven to 350 degreesF. grease two 9 inch round cake pans, line the bottoms with parchment circles and grease the parchment. combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder, spices, and salt. sift or whisk well. in another large bowl, combine sugar, oil, vanilla and eggs. whisk to combine. dump the dry mix into the sugar mixture and combine, then stir in the pumpkin. fold in the cranberries if using (or just scatter them over the top of the batter in the cake pans and press in a bit). divide batter evenly in the cake pans. bake for 35-40 minutes, until a tester comes out just clean. Cream Cheese Frosting *i like a less sweet cream cheese frosting. add more sugar if you want. 16 oz cream cheese, softened 8 oz (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened 2 1/2 - 3 cups confectioners' sugar 1/4-1/2 vanilla bean, seeds scraped OR a splash of vanilla beat cream cheese and butter in an electric mixer fitted with paddle attachment until its all fluffy and creamed. add the sugar and vanilla bean seeds or extract. beat, scrape down the bowl, beat more.
1/2 cup olive oil, plus more for greasing the bowl
5 large eggs
1 tbsp salt
8 to 8 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup golden raisins
in a large bowl, dissolve yeast and 1 tbsp sugar in 1 3/4 cups lukewarm water.
whisk oil into the yeast, then beat in 4 eggs, one at a time, with remaining sugar and salt. gradually add flour. when the dough holds together, it's ready for kneading.
turn dough onto a floured surface and knead until smooth. clean out the big bowl and grease it, then return the dough to the bowl. cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place for 1 hour, until almost doubled in size. you can warm your oven to 150 and then turn it off, and let the dough rise in there.
after doubled, punch down dough, cover and let rise again in a warm place for another half-hour.
at this point, you can start braiding the dough. it will make 2 larger loaves or 3 smaller ones. i simply divide each ball of dough into 3 equal pieces, roll each one out, pinch the ends together and braid. to make a round challah, just twist into a circle, pinching the ends together. make two or three loaves. place the braided loaves onto greased cookie sheets, with at least 2 inches in between them.
beat remaining egg and brush it on loaves. at this point, you can either freeze breads or let rise another hour. if baking immediately, preheat the oven to 375 degreesF and brush loaves with second egg wash.
bake in the middle of the oven for 30 to 40 minutes, or until golden. cool loaves on a rack.
combine the flour and the salt in a bowl and whisk or sift.
in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugar for a few minutes, until light and fluffy. add the egg and beat well, scraping down the sides. then add the extracts. finally add the flour and salt and beat until combined and dough comes together.
split dough in half and wrap each in plastic, pressing down into a disc. refrigerate for an hour.
on a piece of parchment paper or on a lightly floured surface, roll out one disc of dough to about 1/4 inch thickness. slide the parchment onto a cutting board or cookie sheet and place back into the fridge for about 15 minutes. repeat with the other disc of dough. take the first sheet of dough out and cut into whatever shape you'd like, in this case diamond and triangular meth fragment shapes. place on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper, about 2 inches apart from other cookies or edges. repeat until all the dough has been cut. place each cookie sheet in the freezer for 10-15 minutes. (this will help them keep their shape in the oven) preheat the oven to 350 degreesF. bake for 12-14 minutes, or until edges turn golden. cool sheets on wire racks for 10 minutes, then transfer cookies to wrack to finish cooling.