Baking a Pumpkin Spiced Latte Loaf

Baking the Loaf 

 It’s officially autumn and Halloween is fast approaching, what better excuse is there to get into the kitchen and bake some seasonal sweet treats. I don’t know about you, but one of my favourite things about the season is a Pumpkin Spiced Latte. It suddenly occurred to me, what better way to celebrate them than to attempt a recreation of this beautiful beverage. So here is an account of my most recent loaf cake for week seven, Pumpkin Spiced Latte Loaf Cake.

 Halloween has always been a very special time. My family celebrated every year when we were growing up with an extravagant party. And surprise, surprise, there was always a lot of baking involved. This cake is a perfect addition to your Halloween party table. 

 Although the method in creating this cake sounds daunting, it was surprisingly very easy. The best thing about a loaf cake is its simplicity, however, simple does not have to mean boring. You are able to play with some amazing flavours and this particular loaf cake signifies the point excellently.

When researching how to create this recipe, I noticed a lot of American authors had included a can of pumpkin puree and not fresh pumpkin. In my local supermarkets I could not source this product, so I am not sure if it is available in the UK. However, I was so pleased to see that it did not matter in the slightest. I roasted edible pumpkins myself and created the puree, which was very easy. 

 When creating this cake I wanted to draw elements to the drink as much as possible. I always have mine served with cream on top. So of course the cake should have a creamy frosting. I wasn’t keen on inserting coffee flavour into the sponge itself, but I thought it could work well with the topping. 

When I had created my cake I couldn’t believe how similar it actually tasted to the Starbucks Pumpkin Spiced Latte. The sponge itself was perfectly moist; this was probably assisted with the addition of pumpkin. I even managed to convince a few of my wary friends, who were not sure they liked pumpkin for anything more than carving. Overall, I would totally make this cake again. Perhaps once the starbucks PSL season are over, I can mourn with another Pumpkin Spiced Latte Loaf!


Ingredients 

  •  1 edible pumpkin, (260ml pumpkin purée) 
  • 200 g flour 
  • 1/2 teaspoon of salt 
  • 200 g caster sugar 
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda 
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  •  1/2 teaspoon cinnamon 
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg 
  • 1/2 teaspoon allspice 
  • 125g unsalted butter, melted and cooled
  • 2 large eggs, beaten 
  • 60ml water
  •  2 teaspoons molasses 

For the Coffee Frosting 

  •  100g Unsalted Butter 
  • 50g Cream Cheese
  •  2 tsp Vanilla Essence 
  • 2 tbsp Coffee extract (Create your own by adding 2 heaped tsp of coffee granules into a mug with 100ml of boiled water stir and chill) 
  • 300g icing sugar 
  • 2 tsp on cinnamon for dusting 


Method 

  •  Firstly make the pumpkin purée. To do this, cut your edible pumpkin in half. Scoop out all the stringy bits and seeds. Place the pumpkin halves cut side down onto a baking tray lined with tin foil. Bake for 55 minutes. Let the pumpkins cool for 10 minutes, then using oven gloves, carefully turn them over to check the inside is soft and tender. Leave to cool for a further 10 minutes, then use a small knife to chop the pumpkin halves in half again, and carefully slice the outside skin away while using a clean tea towel to hold them, as they will still be hot. Place the pumpkin slices into a pan and use a hand-blender to create the purée.
  • Whilst the purée is cooling, Preheat the oven to Gas Mark 4 (180°C) and line a 8 x 4 x 3 -inch loaf pan with butter and baking parchment. 
  • Place the flour, salt, sugar, baking soda, ground ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, and allspice in a bowl and mix gently using a hand whisk. 
  • In a freestanding mixer combine together the cooled pumpkin purée, the melted butter, beaten eggs, water, and molasses. 
  • Sift the flour mixture into the wet mixture and beat for roughly 1 minute. 
  • Pour your mixture into the prepared pan and place onto the middle rack of the oven. Bake for 45 to 60 minutes or until a knife inserted to the loaf cake comes out clean. 
  • Leave the loaf cake to cool in the tin for 10 minutes. Then carefully transfer to a wire rack and remove the paper. 
  • When the cake has completely cooled, start creating the frosting. In a large bowl cream together butter, cream cheese, vanilla and coffee extract. Then slowly sift in the icing sugar and mix until it is stiff and creamy. Pipe it onto your cake in a desired pattern. Finish with a dusting of cinnamon.



Baking a Baileys, Banana and Walnut Loaf Cake with Baileys Ganache

Welcome back to week 13 of my baking loaf challenge. I am really excited to share with you this week my baileys, banana and walnut loaf cake. This is an absolute must for Christmas. Everyone in my family goes through baileys like it is going out of fashion- but only at Christmas. The season allows us to over indulge, so what better time to try this cake. There is usually plenty of baileys going around, or you can use an alternative Irish liquor.

 The combination of creamy baileys works perfectly with the sweet moistness of the banana sponge. I have added walnuts in for a bit of texture, whilst also topping with a crisp baileys chocolate ganache. This just sets of the flavour and texture combinations perfectly. It really is one of my absolute favourites.  

INGREDIENTS

  • 100g roughly chopped walnuts 
  • 1 tsp salt 
  • 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda 
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon 
  • 275g plain flour 
  • 3 large (or 4 medium) very ripe bananas that have been mashed up 
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract 
  • 50ml double cream 
  • 100ml of Baileys liquor 
  • 2 large eggs 
  • 110g softened unsalted butter 
  • 200g caster sugar 

Baileys Ganache 

  • A handful of walnuts whole 
  • 200g dark chocolate 
  • 100ml double cream 
  • 150 ml of Baileys liquor 
  •  A pinch of Salt 
  • 15g unsalted butter 

METHOD 

  • Preheat the oven to 180°C, gas mark 4. In a large bowl, mix 200g caster sugar with 110g softened unsalted butter. Gradually beat in 2 large eggs. 
  • Add 75ml Irish cream liqueur, 50ml whipping cream, 1 tsp vanilla extract and 3 large (or 4 medium) very ripe bananas that have been mashed up. Stir in 275g plain flour, 1 tsp ground cinnamon, 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda and 1 tsp salt until you have a moist batter. 
  • Fold in 100g roughly chopped walnuts. Pour the mixture into a greased and lined large loaf tine. Bake for 1 hour, or until a knife inserted in the centre comes out clean. 
  • To make the ganache melt the broken chocolate pieces and the butter together in a pan. Once melted add the baileys, salt and cream together and stir until fully combined. Pour onto the top of the cake. Place the whole walnuts on top and then leave in the fridge for 30 minutes to set for a while.

Baking Red Velvet Mini Loaves

We are now on week twelve of my baking loaf challenge and this week I decided it was about time to shake it up a bit. For quite a while, I have had my eye on a very decent mini loaf tin. I don’t know about you, but I have found it is easy to spot a good quality tin by the heavy weight of one. I thought this could be an adorable new addition to my blog. 

My decision for this week was to create red velvet mini loaves with buttercream icing. I thought the best way to create these mini loaves might be to use a similar cupcake recipe. So I used my trusty hummingbird book, as I know their red velvet cupcakes are notorious.

 These little loaves looked so cute and they are a great alternative to cupcakes. They also work brilliantly for parties as they can be easily handed out or picked up, especially great for christmas. The possibilities for the mini loaf tin are indeed endless. But this was a great recipe to begin with. 

 My advice would be to use a very good quality red food colouring. I made the mistake of using a cheaper colouring and they did not turn as red as I had hoped, even though I added the correct amount. Red velvet cakes are very indulgent and chocolatey. Perfect for any occasion that requires cake! 

 Decorate as you wish, but I found these neat buttercream twirls to be just the right amount and if desired top with a few red sprinkles.  


Ingredients 

  • 60 g unsalted butter at room temperature
  •  150 g caster sugar 
  • 1 egg 
  • 20 g cocoa powder 
  • 40 ml red food colouring
  •  ½ tsp vanilla extract 
  • 120 ml buttermilk 
  • 150 g plain flour 
  • ½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
  •  1½ tsp white vinegar 
  • 1 x 12 mini loaf tin, grease with butter 
  • 300 g icing sugar, sifted 
  • 20 g unsalted butter, at room temperature 
  • 125 g cream cheese, cold

Method 

 Preheat the oven to 170°C/325°F/gas mark 3. 

Put the butter and the sugar in a freestanding electric mixer with a paddle attachment (or use a handheld electric whisk) and beat on medium speed until light and fluffy and well mixed. Turn the mixer up to high speed, slowly add the egg and beat until everything is well incorporated. 

In a separate bowl, mix together the cocoa powder, red food colouring and vanilla extract to make a very thick, dark paste. Add to the butter mixture and mix thoroughly until evenly combined and coloured (scrape any unmixed ingredients from the side of the bowl with a rubber spatula). Turn the mixer down to slow speed and slowly pour in half the buttermilk. 

Beat until well mixed, then add half the flour and beat until everything is well incorporated. Repeat this process until all the buttermilk and flour have been added. Scrape down the side of the bowl again. Turn the mixer up to high speed and beat until you have a smooth, even mixture. Turn the mixer down to low speed and add the bicarbonate of soda and vinegar. Beat until well mixed, then turn up the speed again and beat for a couple more minutes. 

Spoon the mixture into the greased mini loaf tin until two-thirds full in each segment and bake in the preheated oven for 30 to 35 minutes, or until the sponge bounces back when touched. A skewer inserted in the centre should come out clean. Leave the cupcakes to cool slightly in the tray before turning out onto a wire cooling rack to cool completely. 

Meanwhile, make the frosting by beating the icing sugar the remaining 20g of the unsalted butter together in a freestanding electric mixer with a paddle attachment (or use a handheld electric whisk) on medium-slow speed until the mixture comes together and is well mixed. Add the cream cheese in one go and beat it until it is completely incorporated. Turn the mixer up to medium-high speed. Continue beating until the frosting is light and fluffy, at least five minutes. Do not overbeat, as it can quickly become runny.

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