Chocolate Pumpkin Pound Cake

Swirls of spiced cake with chocolate glaze

My neighbor's maple tree is wearing its glorious fall coat. If you walk by at the right moment in late afternoon, the generously leafy canopy appears to glow with golden light; like a sequined Hannah Montana in the spotlight.

Meanwhile, I've seen crocuses poking up out of lawns, and my gnarly old crabapple is blooming bright pink blossoms. Poor thing - it's getting on in years and must be easily confused by the unusually spring-like temperature. Unpredictable weather is typical for us here in St. Louis; last year at about this time we were huddling around the fireplace with our winter coats on after an ice storm knocked out our power for a few days.

Despite the freakish weather I still have fall cooking on the brain. Plus, I was inspired by Ivonne over at Cream Puffs in Venice - she's got a great idea called Magazine Mondays going. Find all those flagged recipes in your food magazine stack and get cooking!

I loved the colors in this cake - it's from Sunset magazine - I found it at Myrecipes.com.
Since I made this for a treat on Halloween night, I used my extra-dark cocoa powder in the chocolate batter (as in the Starbucks Chocolate Cinnamon Bread)- it looks great swirled with the pumpkin-orange cake.

Chocolate Pumpkin Marble Pound Cake
from Sunset Magazine, November 2003

1 1/2 cups (3/4 lb.) butter, at room temperature
3 cups sugar
6 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 1/4 cups canned pumpkin
2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
3/4 cup Dutch-processed unsweetened cocoa
2/3 cup buttermilk
Chocolate glaze (recipe follows)

1. In a large bowl, with a mixer on medium speed, beat butter and sugar until well blended. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in vanilla. Scrape half the mixture into another bowl.

2. To make pumpkin batter: Beat pumpkin into half the butter mixture until well blended. In another bowl, stir together 1 3/4 cups flour, 1 teaspoon baking powder, 1/2 teaspoon salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves. Add flour mixture to pumpkin mixture and beat on low speed or fold in with a flexible spatula just until blended.

3. To make chocolate batter: In another bowl, mix remaining 1 cup flour, 1 teaspoon baking powder, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and the cocoa. Add flour mixture alternately with the buttermilk to the other half of the butter mixture (starting and ending with flour mixture), beating after each addition just until blended.

4. Spoon half the pumpkin batter into a buttered and floured 12-cup bundt-cake pan. Drop half the chocolate batter by spoonfuls over (but not entirely covering) the pumpkin batter. Repeat to spoon remaining pumpkin and chocolate batters into pan. Gently run the blade of a butter knife around the center of the pan several times, then draw the knife across the width of the pan in 10 to 12 places to swirl batters.

5. Bake in a 350° regular or 325° convection oven until a wood skewer inserted into center of cake comes out with a few moist crumbs attached, 55 to 60 minutes. Let cake cool 10 minutes in pan, then invert onto a rack, lift off pan, and cool cake completely.

6. Pour warm chocolate glaze over the top of the cake, letting it drip down the sides. Sprinkle glaze with peanuts if desired. Let stand until glaze is set, about 2 hours, or chill about 30 minutes.

Chocolate Glaze: In a heatproof bowl or the top of a double boiler, combine 4 ounces chopped semisweet chocolate, 1/2 cup whipping cream, 1 tablespoon butter, and 1 teaspoon corn syrup. Bring an inch or two of water to a boil in a pan that the bowl can nest in or in bottom of double boiler, then remove from heat. Place chocolate mixture over water and let stand, stirring occasionally, until melted and smooth, about 10 minutes.

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Susan said...

Chocolate and pumpkin? I love them both, though I've never had them together. That's gonna change now that I have this recipe. Thanks for the delicious idea, Karen.

Patricia Scarpin said...

Karen, save a big slice for me, please? ;)

Shannon Kohn said...

This recipe sounds incredible, Karen! I was looking for something sweet-yet-different to serve for Thanksgiving this year, and this is the ticket!

Congrats on all your success and I wish you good luck in all your endeavors!

Shannon :-)

valentinA said...

What a lovely cake:)
I'd love to have that for my afternoon coffee break:)

Jenny said...

This cake looks beautiful. Makes me want to make it right now! Hope you and the family had a great Halloween. My spiderman and pirate beg for their candy 23/24 hours of the day. I'll be glad when it's gone!

Karen said...

Susan, I know the combo sounds strange, but I've been seeing quite a few recipes lately, cookies, cakes and pies too.

Will do, Patricia!

Hi Shannon...I'm glad you stopped by my blog. And thanks for the good wishes!

Valentina, yes that would be lovely.

Jenny, thanks.
And yes, my Darth Vader and Hannah Montana are slowly making their way through their bags...they might need some "editing" from you-know-who.

Emiline said...

I wasn't a believer in chocolate and pumpkin, but now I think I am. The picture is gorgeous.

Meghan said...

this looks fantastic... i make a chocolate pumpkin cheesecake... but this might be "easier" under thanksgiving pressure!

i like your blog a lot!

Rachel said...

That looks wonderful! I made pumpkin cheesecake-chocolate brownies this year that were great, so I know this is a good combo!

Karen said...

Thanks Emiline!

Hi Meghan - wow, your cheesecake sounds delish...thanks for stopping by.

Rachel, and your brownies would be one more thing for me to try. Yum.

Deborah Dowd said...

I would not have thought if combining chocolate and pumpkin, but it is intriguing. This may find its way to my Thanksgiving table!