When my sons were teenagers, they wanted to have a Halloween party at home. I made this cake that looks like a jack-o’-lantern but is pretty delicious to cut up and eat. The best part: You don’t have to contend with seeds or pumpkin pulp!
Start with the cake. You can do a pumpkin cake from scratch if you want to really be in the Halloween mode, but you also can do any flavor you like —spice, yellow, chocolate. Make it from a mix, if you prefer.
Bake two cakes in Bundt pans. Cool both cakes on a wire rack. If the flat sides of the cakes are too rounded or bumpy, level them off with a knife. Put the two flat sides together, using icing to cement them in place. Voila! You have a pumpkin shape. Place slips of waxed or parchment paper onto a serving platter or pedestal, then place the cake on top of the paper. This will help you keep frosting off the serving dish.
Check out the new colored frosting options in the baking aisle of the grocery store. You can make your own icing using the recipe that accompanies the pumpkin cake recipe above, or just choose a ready-made white, vanilla or cream cheese frosting and add red and yellow food coloring till you get the desired shade of pumpkin orange. Frost the entire cake. Remove slips of paper from the bottom..
Now, for the decorations. I used a flat-bottomed ice cream cone for the pumpkin “stem.” Frost the cone with green icing (again, white icing tinted with green food coloring). If the hole in the middle of your Bundt cake is too big for the cone, you can bridge the gap with a clean disc of cardboard and frost over it before adding the cone. Just remove the cardboard before cutting the cake.
Use extra green icing to make leaves and vines. If you want to get really inventive, make a jack-o’-lantern face on the pumpkin cake with black or chocolate icing.
Other pumpkin treat options
You can make mini pumpkins if you have a mini-Bundt pan. Put two mini cakes together to create little pumpkins. Proceed as directed above. Instead of using ice cream cones for the stems, just create them from green frosting or even leaves. Or see Sandra Lee’s recipe that includes an orange glaze.
Hosting a kids’ Halloween party? As a fun activity, let each child decorate his or her mini pumpkin to eat or take home. You can even make pumpkin cake pops if you’re feeling crafty and creative. They’re fun, individual treats on sticks. You can even buy pumpkin molds.
Whichever route you choose, pumpkin cakes will add a special touch to your Halloween.
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