Spiced Chocolate-Pumpkin Cake With Pumpkin Glaze

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This lightly spiced chocolate cake from Yossy Arefi‘s book Snacking Cakes is packed with pumpkin purée and features spices often found in Mexican chocolate. If you choose to use it, the pinch of cayenne adds a pleasing bit of warmth. You can also top the cake with 2 tablespoons granulated sugar mixed with 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon and another pinch of cayenne instead of the glaze. If you’re making a loaf cake, halve the sugar-spice mixture.

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Ingredients

Makes one 8×8″, 9″-diameter, or 9×5″ cake

Unsalted butter or nonstick vegetable oil spray (for pan)

2

large eggs

¾

cup (packed; 150 g) light brown sugar

1

cup (230 g) plus 1 Tbsp. unsweetened pumpkin purée, divided

½

cup extra-virgin olive oil

½

cup plus 1 Tbsp. (or more) whole milk, divided

1

tsp. vanilla extract

tsp. ground cinnamon, divided

½

tsp. Diamond Crystal or ¼ tsp. Morton kosher salt, plus more

2

pinches of cayenne pepper, divided (optional)

½

cup (45 g) unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder

1

cup (125 g) all-purpose flour

1

tsp. baking powder

½

tsp. baking soda

½

cup (85 g) bittersweet or semisweet chopped chocolate or chocolate chips

1

cup (110 g) powdered sugar

Pinch of ground cloves

Steps

1.

Place a rack in middle of oven; preheat to 350°. Butter or lightly spray an 8×8″ baking pan, 9″-diameter cake pan, or 9×5″ loaf pan with unsalted butter or nonstick vegetable oil spray. Line pan with parchment paper, leaving overhang on all sides if using square pan or long side if using loaf pan. Use a parchment paper round on the bottom if using cake pan.

2.

Whisk 2 large eggs and ¾ cup (packed; 150 g) light brown sugar in a large bowl until pale and foamy, about 1 minute.

3.

Add 1 cup (230 g) unsweetened pumpkin purée, ½ cup extra-virgin olive oil, ½ cup whole milk, 1 tsp. vanilla extract, 1 tsp. ground cinnamon, ½ tsp. Diamond Crystal or ¼ tsp. Morton kosher salt, and a pinch of cayenne pepper (if using). Whisk vigorously until smooth and emulsified.

4.

Add ½ cup (45 g) unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder and whisk until smooth. Add 1 cup (125 g) all-purpose flour, 1 tsp. baking powder, and ½ tsp. baking soda and whisk again until incorporated. Using a rubber spatula, fold in ½ cup (85 g) bittersweet or semisweet chopped chocolate or chocolate chips.

5.

Pour batter into prepared pan; smooth surface with an offset spatula. Tap pan gently on the counter to release any air bubbles.

6.

Bake cake until puffed and a tester inserted into the center comes out clean, 45–55 minutes for square or round cake, 55–65 minutes for loaf cake. Transfer cake to a wire rack and let cool in pan 15 minutes. For square or loaf cake, using parchment overhang, lift cake out of pan and onto rack. For round cake, run offset spatula around edges of cake and turn out. Remove parchment and let cool completely.

7.

To make the glaze, whisk 1 cup (110 g) powdered sugar, a pinch of ground cloves, a pinch of kosher salt, remaining 1 Tbsp. unsweetened pumpkin purée, remaining 1 Tbsp. whole milk, remaining ¼ tsp. ground cinnamon, and remaining pinch of cayenne pepper (if using) in a small bowl until smooth. Glaze should be pourable. If it’s too thick, whisk in a few more drops of milk.

8.

Pour glaze over cooled cake and let sit 20 minutes to allow glaze to set before slicing.

9.

Do ahead: Cake can be made 3 days ahead. Store covered at room temperature.

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Adapted from Snacking Cakes by Yossy Arefi. Copyright © 2020 by Yossy Arefi. Reprinted with permission from Clarkson Potter. All rights reserved.

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