I buy pecans each fall from a company in Georgia, Sunnyland Farms. I usually order a 3-lb. or a 5-lb. box and just keep them in the freezer until I need them. It’s pretty easy and I always have fresh pecans to add to muffins, cakes or salads. My family knows that when those boxes arrive good things follow.
Pumpkin pie spice is easy to make. Just combine 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon, 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger, 1/2 teaspoon ground allspice and 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg.
Glazed Pumpkin Pecan Cakes
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup water
3/4 cup canned pumpkin
1/4 cup vegetable oil
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup finely chopped pecans, toasted
1 cup powdered sugar
1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Generously grease and flour 10-12 fluted individual tube pans of about 3.75 to 4 inches or one 10-inch fluted tube pan. Remove 2 teaspoons zest from orange and then squeeze the juice from the orange.
2. In a large bowl combine orange zest and next six ingredients (through vanilla). Stir in next five ingredients (through salt) until combined.
3. Sprinkle about 1 tablespoon pecans in the bottom of each prepared individual pan and top with about 1/3 cup batter. Or sprinkle all of the pecans in a 10-inch tube pan and top with all of the batter. Bake 30 to 35 minutes for mini cakes, 45 to 50 minutes for 10-inch cake, or until a wooden skewer comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack 10 minutes for mini cakes or 20 minutes for large cake. Remove from pan(s); cool completely on wire rack.
4. Meanwhile for glaze, in a medium bowl stir together powdered sugar and enough of the orange juice (3-4 teaspoons) to reach drizzling consistency.
5. Drizzle cake(s) with glaze and, if desired, top with additional orange zest.
Tip — If you don’t have 10 to 12 individual fluted tube pans, bake the mini cakes in batches. While each batch bakes, cover and chill the remaining batter. After removing baked mini cakes, let the pans cool. Wash and dry pans, then repeat greasing and flouring the pans, filling them with batter and baking another batch.
Makes 10 mini cakes (at 341 calories each) or one 10-inch cake.
(Source: Better Homes & Gardens 100 Best Pumpkin Recipes)
Susan Woody has been a food writer for more than 25 years and is a member of the Association of Food Journalists.