I have a very long-standing relationship with pumpkins. Along with trains, puppies, and I suppose other baby farm animals, I have had an admiration and love of pumpkins for almost as long as I can remember. Perhaps it was planting them in our garden as a kid and then harvesting them for my mom's pumpkin pie, or for the purpose of lighting up the front steps of our farmhouse as a freaky-looking jack-o-lantern. For a few years I was determined to grow the largest pumpkin possible, inspired by Laura Ingalls Wilder's tale of milk-fed pumpkins. (My heaviest pumpkin only maxed out at around 40 lbs, far short of the 400 pounder that landed my childhood friend Paula on the Kathy and Regis show some 20 years ago.) Whatever the reason, and there are many, I will always have a strong affinity for the friendly pumpkin. A couple of days ago, I found yet another way to enjoy this old friend of mine - in the form of a pumpkin cake roll.
When it comes to working in the kitchen, over a hot stove or in and out of a hot oven, I strive to be a purist. I'm a big fan and proponent of making things from scratch and knowing exactly what is going into a recipe and not having to wonder what is coming out of a boxed mix or a synthetically enhanced can or jar of something. For this pumpkin cake roll I took somewhat of a departure from that orientation and used a can of pumpkin puree.
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Pumpkin Cake Roll
Pumpkin Cake Roll
adapted from Taste of Home
for the cake
- 3 eggs, separated
- 1 cup sugar, divided
- 2/3 cup canned pumpkin
- 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese, softened
- 2 tablespoons butter, softened
- 1 cup confectioners' sugar
- 3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Additional confectioners' sugar, optional
- Line a 15-in. x 10-in. x 1-in. baking pan with waxed paper; grease the paper and set aside. In a large bowl, beat egg yolks on high speed until thick and lemon-colored. Gradually add 1/2 cup sugar and pumpkin, beating on high until sugar is almost dissolved.
- In a small bowl, beat egg whites until soft peaks form. Gradually add remaining sugar, beating until stiff peaks form. Fold into egg yolk mixture. Combine the flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt; gently fold into pumpkin mixture. Spread into prepared pan.
- Bake at 375° for 12-15 minutes or until cake springs back when lightly touched. Cool for 5 minutes. Turn cake onto a kitchen towel dusted with confectioners’ sugar. Gently peel off waxed paper. Roll up cake in the towel jelly-roll style, starting with a short side. Cool completely on a wire rack.
- In a small bowl, beat the cream cheese, butter, confectioners' sugar and vanilla until smooth. Unroll cake; spread filling evenly to within 1/2 in. of edges. Roll up again. Cover and freeze until firm. May be frozen for up to 3 months. Remove from the freezer 15 minutes before cutting. Dust with confectioners’ sugar if desired. Yield: 10 servings.
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