Thanksgiving is just about a week away and I'm only now remotely getting into the swing of things. I think it's this "amazing" Southern California weather that has been keeping the excitement of the holidays at bay -- I don't know how Floridians don't just skip Thanksgiving and Christmas altogether and go straight to Memorial Day. I'm personally not a fan of the eternal mild summer we've been having and am loooooonging for the brisk air of New York City that was biting at my cheeks two weeks ago.
Driving through the valley over the weekend, I actually had a vision of brown, red, and orange leaves, dancing in the wind along the street and was startled by the realization that the last quarter of the year has been passing far too quickly and I had better get in the mood before my favorite time of year speeds by and it's January - ugh. The worst!
It's been a crazy packed month so far (when has that not been the case in recent memory??), so I've only now gotten a chance to delve into this month's Tuesday's With Dorie assignments, but nothing else says "holiday" quite like pumpkin even if I don't think it should be strictly reserved for fall months, and neither does Libby's! Britin of The Nitty Britty chose Dorie's All-in-One holiday bundt cake this month, and it's just what I needed to cook up some nostalgia for last year's Thanksgiving, and look impossibly forward to this year's festivities.
Full of apples and pecan suspended in a burnt-orange crumb, every bite was full of the omnipresent fall spices of cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger (I decided to omit the cranberries). It was so moist and held together in such a way that I wasn't sure the cake was baked through, but it was indeed. Its loose crumbs were just masquerading as tight clumps. I find a lot of pumpkin loaves use oil as its fat, and unfortunately, you can usually taste that presence, however delicious the cake may be. This loaf had none of that staleness or mouthfeel. With the addition of apples to the pumpkin puree, there's no drying out this guy, even if it was in the oven for five minutes too long. In fact, I think the extended time allowed a nice crust to form, creating a lovely contrast between the tender interior.
There are some recipes that you turn to when you want to a recollect certain memories or feelings, and this is the perfect cake to remind you of all things fall. Thanksgiving dinner in 9 days -- I cannot contain myself!!