Pumpkin cake topped with a smooth and glossy chocolate icing

Tomorrow morning I will be making my cooking début on live television, whooohoooooo! The lovely people from SABC3 Expresso Breakfast Show and Sasko have invited me to be a regular guest throughout 2012, and I cannot wait to embark on this fantastic new adventure.

I will be cooking a chocolate pumpkin cake from Sasko’s inventive recipe book – an amazingly user-friendly book complete with step-by-step photographs. That makes following the recipe really easy!

Most people haven’t heard of a pumpkin cake before. Don’t worry, me neither! However, I am a huge fan of pumpkin pie and of course the ultimate little pumpkin fritter covered in cinnamon sugar. See the pumpkin cake as the decadent twin of the pumpkin pie: a dense, moist, buttery cake resembling a baked custard crossed with a malva pudding. And to top it all off, it is covered with a rich and smooth chocolate icing. A daringly delicious end result, if I may say so myself.

This cake is moist, dense and deliciously buttery.

Ingredients for the cake:

  • 250 g soft butter/margarine
  • 250 ml castor sugar (200 g)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 30 ml apricot jam
  • 500 ml cooked pumpkin, mashed (500 g)
  • 5 ml vanilla essence
  • 125 ml milk
  • 500 ml Sasko Self-Raising Flour (250 g)
  • 5 ml bicarbonate of soda
  • 60 ml custard powder

Ingredients for the icing:

  • 80 g soft butter/margarine
  • 60 ml hot water
  • 500 ml icing sugar (250 g)
  • 60 ml cocoa powder


  1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius. Lightly grease and line a 23 cm round cake tin. Cream the butter and sugar with an electric beater.
  2. Beat in the eggs, jam, mashed pumpkin, vanilla, and milk.
  3. Sift the dry ingredients together and fold into the pumpkin mixture.
  4. Spoon mixture into the prepared tin and bake at 180 degrees Celsius for 55-60 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean.
  5. Cool the cake in the tin for 10 minutes and turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely.
  6. For the icing, sift icing sugar and cocoa together, then mix well with butter and water in a large bowl, using a wooden spoon, untill smooth and glossy.
  7. Spread icing evenly over cake and decorate.

For a truly decadent way of serving this cake, try sprinkling it with chopped nuts (like peanuts or walnuts), and serve with a dollop of freshly whipped cream – the German way!

Tip: To make icing with the consistency of a chocolate ganache, like I did in the photograph, I used recently boiled water instead of warm water. Pour/drizzle over cake and decorate.

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  1. i must have been living under a rock, but i just found your blog today, and i can’t stop paging through. Amazing amazing! Thanks for motivating me to get back to blogging myself.. this was the kick i needed 🙂
    Also? Great to see you on Expresso in the mornings, love seeing fellow food bloggers succeed, makes me all glowy inside.

    1. It’s so great to be called the motivator! What a great compliment.
      And thank you so much for sharing my excitement about my tv gig – it’s something that I have wanted to do for years, and finally the ball is rolling!

      I cannot wait for FBI 2012 in June, then we can all meet face to face at long last. A place where food obsessers can unite! 🙂

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