Haunted Spice Cake
PREP: 20 MINUTES
COOK: 1 HOUR 15 MINUTES
SERVINGS: 15 SERVINGS
- 3 1/ 2 cups flour
- 2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 sticks unsalted butter
- 2 cups granulated sugar
- 5 eggs, lightly beaten
- 3/ 4 cup milk
- 1/ 2 cup pumpkin puree
- 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 3/ 4 cup confectioner’s sugar
- 1 1/ 2 teaspoon milk
- 1/ 4 teaspoon vanilla extract
- pinch of salt
Preheat oven to 325˚ F. Grease and flour both wells of the Skull Cake Pan; remove excess flour. Place the pan on a parchment-lined baking sheet. The cake should be baked in the lower third of the oven.
To make the cake, in a bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder and salt; set aside. In a separate bowl, beat the butter on medium speed until creamy and smooth. Add the granulated sugar and pumpkin pie spice and continue beating, stopping occasionally to scrape down the sides of the bowl and continue mixing until light and fluffy. Then add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition, repeating until all the eggs have been added. On low speed, add flour mixture into the bowl in 3 additions, alternating with the milk and starting and ending with the flour. Then mix in pumpkin puree.
Spoon the batter into the prepared wells evenly, 3/4 full. Tap each pan gently on a work surface to release the air bubbles. Bake for 65 to 70 minutes until the cake starts to pull away from the pan and a toothpick comes out clean when inserted into the center. Transfer the pan to a wire rack and let the cake cool inside the pan for 15 minutes. Remove the cake halves from the pan. Let the cake cool completely before assembling and decorating.
In a bowl beat the butter until smooth and creamy. Add the confectioners’ sugar, milk, vanilla, salt and beat until light and fluffy. Stop to scrape down the bottom and sides of the bowl as needed.
When completely cool, return the cake halves back into the pan. With a serrated knife gently saw the excess cake that rose above the edge of the pan. Then remove the back half of the cake from the pan, leaving the front half in the pan. Spread a thin layer of buttercream on the front half that is still in the pan. Take the back half of the cake and press down gently onto the buttercream to secure the halves together. For additional stability, place a 4 inch skewer into the base of the skull and another one into the upper half of the skull on the back side of the cake. Cover the cake with plastic wrap and refrigerate the cake until the buttercream is firm.
Prepare a serving plate by placing buttercream on the plate that is half the size of the cake’s base, about 1 1/2 Tbsp. Remove the cake from the pan and place the cake upright on top of the buttercream. Decorate as desired.