Tis the season and I’ve got pumpkins on the brain. My mom had asked me to make her a vegan pumpkin cheesecake, but while I was browsing through my cookbooks for a good recipe I came across another pumpkin based treat that grabbed my attention instead and wouldn’t let go. Luckily I just so happened to have all the ingredients on hand to make the Pumpkin Crumb Cake with Pecan Streusel from The Veganomicon (don’t worry mom, you’ll get your cheesecake eventually).
I made it and it was awesome. This is a big deal for two reasons:
1.) It’s the first dessert item I’ve made from The Veganomicon, I’d previously only tried making savory dishes, and
2.) This is the first cake I’ve ever made in my life.
It’s true. Insert collective shocked gasp here. You already know this whole cooking-for-real thing is pretty new for me still… there’s just never been an occasion ever which required me to make a cake. In my world cakes are things you buy or which other people who are far better at baking make for you… making one from scratch is all new territory as far as I’m concerned. Sure, I think I may have participated once or twice in some cake action that began as a powdered mix poured from a box, but a real cake, made with real ingredients from start to finish? Nope, first time!
You can imagine I was absolutely stoked that not only was this cake super easy to make, but it’s also exceptionally delicious. Cake success!
I had a tiny freak out when I realized that I didn’t have the full amount of oil the recipe calls for, but I made a last minute executive decision and substituted the amount I didn’t have with the same amount of apple sauce. This seems to have been the right thing to do because this cake was so freakin’ fantastic that I wouldn’t change a thing about it. The texture is very soft and crumbly, perhaps slightly more fall-apartish than it should have been due to the applesauce/oil switcheroo, but that’s it’s only minor flaw. If anything that made it even more tasty because the cake came out exquisitely moist. Everything about this cake was fantastic, from the full-bodied flavor of the pumpkin which really comes through, to the crunchy, sweet and sugary pecan streusel that it’s topped with… SO DAMN GOOD!
The cake is made in a 9 x 13 baking pan, which is pretty big, and it’s just me here… so, um yeah, I’ve eaten nothing but pumpkin cake for the past three days: breakfast, lunch, dinner and late night snacks included. It just gets better and better too the more it sits around. By the second day it had firmed up somewhat and it started reminding me a bit of the tasty honey cakes my grandmother used to make.
If you own The Veganomicon I implore you to give this cake a try (and if you don’t own it I implore you to buy it!). It’s a perfect treat for Halloween in this cool weather we’re enjoying in Los Angeles right now, and I’ll also suggest that it would be an excellent treat to make and share for Thanksgiving or any other sorts of gatherings you might have coming up… one cake will feed at least 16 people. Or just me if you leave me alone with it for a few days.
Happy Halloween everyone… have a spooky and delicious weekend!