Mrs. Sell's Blog of Household Management

Pumpkin sheet cake fail

I am extremely disappointed. Remember the pumpkin sheet cake I was so excited about? I finally made it today. And it ended up being half a pound of butter, over a pound of homemade pumpkin puree, and a bunch of sugar, flour and eggs, all straight into the trash. It was almost worse, but I was able to salvage most of the cream cheese-butter frosting.

I followed the direction exactly, and it looked the same at every point as PW’s pictures, but when I finally cut into it, this is what I got:

pumpkin sheet cake attempt 1

I don’t know if you can really tell, but the crumb of the cake is basically solid: it looks like a cross-section of a custard pie. The flavor was fine, but the texture was completely gummy and rubbery. Fortunately it was solid enough that I could easily scrape all the frosting off to be saved for something else.

Right now I’m tossing around two theories: 1) my baking soda is completely dead, or 2) my homemade pumpkin puree had a lot more water than the canned in the original recipe, and it increased the water content too much.

What I learned: don’t use precious homemade pumpkin puree on new recipes, and never try a new recipe when you need to send treats somewhere (I almost used this recipe to send cupcakes to my husband’s work).

I really want to try this recipe again; I’ve made other versions of PW’s sheet cakes, and they have always been delicious. Fortunately I have a can of regular pumpkin, so I could potentially try again soon, especially since I have the frosting made. I will let you know how it goes…

In other pumpkin news, I made Kenji’s roasted pumpkin soup (a version of which is in his new book), and we had harvest pasta with pumpkin alfredo sauce for dinner. And I had a Tazo chai pumpkin spice latte to stay awake. So there was a lot of pumpkin today. I have tried several new pumpkin products; hopefully I will have time to review them this year!


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