Autumn is, by far, my most favorite season of the year. I especially love how the colours transform into a more muted versions of their former selves.
Gold, loden, moss, vermilion, persimmon, weathered woods. These are colors of settling in and nesting for the colder months ahead. Their tones are inviting and comforting.
Add the aromas of baking with cinnamon, clove, pumpkin, ginger, and toasted nuts wafting through your home, and one should wonder why anyone would want to leave the nest.
Spiced Pumpkin Crumb Cake ~ adapted from this recipe from one of my favorite food blogs.
For the topping:
- 1/3 cup flour
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- pinch of kosher or sea salt
- 6 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into small chunks
- 1 cup chopped nuts (use your favorite, I used pecans)
For the batter:
- 1 cup dried cherries cut into small raisin size bites, or raisins, or cranraisins
- 1 1/2 cups unbleached flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon Baking Soda
- 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon ground clove
- 1 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 cup (one stick) unsalted butter
- 1 cup (220g) brown sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 3/4 cup pure unsweetened pumpkin puree
- 1/2 cup sour cream
- confectioners sugar, for dusting
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter and flour a 9-inch springform pan.
- Make the topping: In a bowl combine the flour, brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt. Pinch in the butter, or use a pastry cutter, until it looks like coarse crumbs. Mix in the chopped nuts, and then refrigerate topping until ready to top the crumb cake.
- Make the batter: In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, clove, ginger, and salt for at least 20 seconds. Set aside.
- With a mixer beat the butter and brown sugar on medium-high until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs, one at a time. Stir in the vanilla extract, pumpkin puree, and sour cream. Stir in the cut up dried cherries, raisins or cranraisins.
- Stir in the flour mixture until just combined. Spread the batter in the prepared pan. Sprinkle the topping over the batter and then bake. Bake for 50 minutes to 1 hour or until a toothpick comes out clean when inserted into the middle of the cake. Allow to cool, then remove from pan and dust with confectioners sugar. Cut and serve.