Tuesday, July 21, 2009

JULY 21: Lest You Think. . .

that I am a rain-hater, I thought I'd write about the lovely rainy afternoon/evening I'm enjoying. Younger and BH have gone to see the latest HP, but I am happy to spend the evening pottering about, watching my latest Netflix (had it for at least a week now!), knitting on my sweater, and enjoying the rain. Elder is going to a swim meet (his last for the season) in Canada this weekend: unfortunately BH and my younger brother have planned a fishing weekend and Younger's show is this weekend, so none of us can attend. . . but we can send food. Elder doesn't have a remarkable sweet tooth (Younger inherited mine, I think) but he does love some things I bake, and one of them is a family standby: Choca-Dotta Pumpkin Cake. If my sister--I think my only reader, in fact!--reads this, she will cringe, since she hated the name when we were kids, tho I don't remember her minding the cake at all. It's a dense, heavy cake, one I often make in the fall and winter, and I thought it would be great for (fairly) healthy breakfasts or snacking for the four days the team will be in St. John. Elder himself is exhausted and sleeping right now (or texting Swimgirl. . . once I'm done this I'll shut off the router, just to check), but it adds to my cozying in feeling of this evening to have the cake in the oven.

AND here's the recipe. Ann, if you've forgotten it. . . have at it! You can call it whatever you want!

Choca-Dotta Pumpkin Cake
(my version)

For starters, mix the "wets" so the bran flakes can dissolve. In a large bowl,
beat 4 eggs and mix with
2 cups or one can of pumpkin (probably not the pie filling, tho I've never tried it)
1 cup of oil
1 1/2 cups of bran flakes (yeah, weird. But this way you can justify eating it for b'fast or sending it on a swim trip). Let that sit.

Then: sift together
2 cups of flour
2 tsp baking pwdr
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp cloves (be sure to take a nice sniff--what smells better?)
1/4 tsp allspice
1/4 tsp ginger
2 cups of sugar (don't really need to sift that, but it makes it easy to keep the dries together)

Mix the dries into the wet, and add 1+ cup of chocolate chips and, if you so desire, 1 cup of nuts. Elder does not desire the nuts but does desire 1.5 cups of chips. SO!

Then: spoon into pans: if you do it in the one tube pan it calls for, grease it well and put the oven on 325 for one hour and a quarter and maybe you'll still need to put tinfoil on the top. I like to do a tube pan AND a small loaf so they don't get brown on top AND so the family can have some for b'fast and still send a nice tube cake to Canada. In that case, I start at 350 and then turn it down to 325; the loaf takes about 45 mins and the cake. . . an hour? But overall: bake till it seems done: some crumbs but no goo on the tester, pulling away from edges, etc.

Enjoy!!!!! My brother loves it with oranges and chocolate sauce. Go figure!

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