There’s nothing like sauntering through a pumpkin patch in Los Angeles looking for the perfect pumpkin under sunny skies and 80 degree temperature.
It’s a tough job. But as a native Angeleno, I somehow manage to muscle through it.
Getting my Halloween pumpkin is actually an annual rite of passage into the holiday season. It gets me into that holiday state of mind. This year my pumpkin ranks up there with Charlie Brown’s Christmas tree. It’s small but meaningful to me. I don’t have small children at home anymore so I don’t need the “great pumpkin.” But I always need a little somethin’ somethin’ to inspire me.
I remember when my kids were little and how they would get so excited about visiting the local pumpkin patch to select a pumpkin that was just right for Halloween. Then there was the quest for the perfect Halloween costume and the trek from store to store until we found the costume that was just right. It seemed like a lot to do about nothing back then. But it’s part of paying your mommy dues. I do miss those days.
My reward for a job well done was to bake a pumpkin chocolate chip Bundt cake which I would enjoy with a cup of cinnamon orange tea after I returned from taking the little goblins trick-or-treating. It was my moment under the moon to soothe my frayed nerves and rest my sore feet. But as goblins would be goblins, that moment was always shorted lived because I always had to stop and wrestle the candy away from their little fingers so they wouldn’t eat themselves into a sugar shock.
Here’s my original, old school recipe. Try it and can create your moment under the moon. It’s great for Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas and anytime you feel like need a little somethin’ somethin’. Oh and one last thing – I just need to warn you that the aroma that wafts throughout your kitchen when it bakes is absolutely glorious. It’s also moist, delicious and rich too.
PC Bundt Cake (pumpkin and chocolate chip)
2 ½ cups sugar
1 cup canola oil
2 teaspoons vanilla
3 cups all-purpose flour (I used whole wheat pastry flour)
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
½ teaspoon salt
1 can (15 ounces) solid-pack pumpkin
1 cup mini chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 325°. In a large bowl, combine sugar and oil until blended. Stir in vanilla. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Sift together flour, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt. Stir half of flour mixture and canned pumpkin into egg n mixture. Blend well. Add remaining flour mixture and pumpkin into egg mixture and blend well. Beat mixture with hand or electric mixture about 2 minutes. Stir in mini chocolate chips.
Pour mixture to a greased 12-cup fluted Bundt pan (I use Baker’s Joy baking spray with flour). Bake 1 hour and 15 minutes or until toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes before inverting onto a wire rack. Remove pan and cool completely. Dust with confectioners’ sugar or drizzle with easy glaze recipe below.
Combine powdered sugar and milk in a bowl. Mix until smooth. Drizzle over cooled cake.