Taste of the Ozarks: Pumpkin Spice Cake with Maple Frosting

Ingredients: (for the cake itself)

3 cups all-purpose flour

1 ½ tsp baking powder

1 ½ tsp baking soda

1 ½ tsp salt

1 ½ TABLESPOONS Garam Masala (or substitute pumpkin pie spice or Chinese 5 spice)

1 ½ cups brown sugar

1 ½ cups granulated sugar

3 sticks melted unsalted butter (1 ½ cups.) Don’t sweat it if you only have ‘salted’ butter.

6 large eggs

28 ounce can pure pumpkin puree, 3 cups. Not pumpkin “pie filling”

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour three 9” cake pans. NOTE; IF YOU CAN’T BEG BORROW OR STEAL three 9” CAKE PANS, USE YOUR OWN JUDGEMENT AS TO WHAT SIZE WILL WORK. A LARGER THAN AVERAGE RECTANGULAR PAN WILL DO IT, OR TRY CUPCAKE TINS! Mix all the dry ingredients in a large bowl. Pour in the melted butter, pumpkin and eggs, beat until smooth.

Divide the ingredients evenly among the three pans (or one big one or cupcake tins). Bake for 30-35 minutes until the top bounces back when pressed. Cool for 10 or 15 minutes, then flip out of the pans and cool completely. If making the three layers, use a serrated knife to trim the top of each cake to make a level surface.

Ingredients for the maple frosting:

16 ounces (two 8 ounce packages) cream cheese

3 sticks unsalted butter, not melted, just softened a bit

2 TBS pure maple syrup (no substitute here, please)

2 tsp. vanilla extract

5-6 cups powdered sugar

Place cream cheese, butter, maple syrup in a bowl, beat until light and creamy. Slowly add the powdered sugar and beat until the desired consistency is reached. If not using immediately, refrigerate until ready to use, then allow to reach room temperature before spreading.

For the ‘three layer’ cake; Place on cake on a cake plate, spread 1/3 of the frosting in a thick layer over the top. Add the second cake on top, spread another 1/3 of the frosting. Top w/the third cake.and frosting. Garnish with chopped nuts or whole halves of pecans or walnuts if desired. If not making three layers, just frost the cakes you made as usual.