Bourbon Pumpkin Cake

We bought a house! More importantly-we bought a beautiful kitchen! I no longer need to use the floor as vital counter space! I have an oven that lets you know when its preheated and a light turns on when you open it.  I have a dishwasher. I repeat. I have a dishwasher! Naturally, an occasion such as this merits a party. And naturally, a party needs a cake. A cake worthy of the celebration.

I kept the structure of the original recipe, but used apple sauce in place of some of the oil and toyed with the spices a little–and upped the amount of bourbon in the cream cheese glaze. (Of course.) Every type of cake I have made with whiskey turns out incredibly moist-this one even more so because of the applesauce. You could totally cut down on the amount of glaze (as you can see, it made a decent amount), but I see cake as merely a vehicle for frosting so I would never do such a thing.

It was definitely worthy of the celebration.

Bourbon Pumpkin Cake

Adapted from A communal table

3 1/2 cups flour

1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

3/4 teaspoon salt

2 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon

1 1/2teaspoon ginger

3/4 teaspoon allspice

1 1/2 cups sugar

1 1/4 cups brown sugar

1/2 cup canola oil

1/2 cup applesauce

1 15 oz. can pumpkin puree

5 eggs

1/3 cup bourbon

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees and grease a cake pan. In a medium bowl combine all the dry ingredients and whisk until thoroughly incorporated and there are no remaining clumps. In a large bowl (I used a Kitchen Aid with the paddle attachment) combine the sugars, oil, applesauce, pumpkin. Once the wet ingredients are combined add the eggs one at a time. After, pour in bourbon. Slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet. Pour the batter in your cake pan and bake for 1 hour or until a tester comes out clean. Let cool completely.

Bourbon Cream Cheese Glaze

6 oz. cream cheese, softened

1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons bourbon

2 1/2 cups powdered sugar

In a medium bowl beat the cream cheese together with the bourbon. Slowly add the powdered sugar. You can start out with less bourbon if you’d like a mellower taste and add more once you have incorporated the sugar. Pour the glaze over the cooled cake.


Pumpkin Ale Pasta

My best friend is getting married ridiculously soon!! She is absolutely the most beautiful girl I’ve ever met. And she loves all things pumpkin. So I hope when they’re back from traipsing around to fabulous places on their honeymoon, that she makes this Pumpkin Ale Pasta, and they enjoy all things pumpkin together.

I have made many a pumpkin pasta sauce before, but with wine or just stock. Why not make it with a pumpkin ale and intensify all that wonderful pumpkin flavor?

And as always-it’s about flexibility. It’s ok to leave the sausage out, or the mushrooms, or the greens-but I really enjoy the flavors together. I wanted to use fresh kale, but if you’re like me and go to the grocery store at an inappropriately early hour, then there is no kale to be found. Spinach will do. And if you’re super fancy like me, you’ll garnish with some sun-dried tomatoes. And parmesan–because cheese makes everything better.

Pumpkin Ale Pasta

Inspired by Rachael Ray, Martha Stewart, and my obsession with pumpkin ales

1 lb. pasta

1 lb. sausage (I used a combination of sweet and hot Italian turkey sausage)

1 medium onion

1 pint mushrooms

2-3 cloves of garlic

1 bunch of kale, stemmed and chopped, or, 10 oz. box of chopped spinach

1 cup pumpkin ale

1 cup chicken stock

15 oz. can pureed pumpkin (NOT pumpkin pie mix!)

1/2 cup heavy cream



chopped sundried tomatoes


Bring a pot of water to a boil, salt and cook pasta according to package directions.

In a large pot (I like to toss the pasta with the sauce in the pot) brown sausage. While sausage is cooking, chop onion, mushrooms and garlic. Remove sausage from pan with a slotted spoon and reserve. Add onion and mushrooms to the pan and saute 3 minutes or until cooked. Add garlic and saute about 30 seconds.

If using fresh kale, you can either boil it with the pasta, steam it above the pasta, or saute and wilt with the onion and mushrooms. You can also defrost a 10 oz. box of spinach, squeeze out the water and add at any time.

Pour in the pumpkin ale. Let it foam and reduce slightly. Add the chicken stock and pumpkin and stir to combine. Let it bubble a little bit. Add cream and seasonings. If you haven’t already, add your greens.

Turn off the heat and add the cooked pasta to the pot and toss all together. Top with a sprinkling of sun-dried tomatoes and grated parmesan.