I discovered this scrumptious and festive recipe in this month's edition of Southern Living and just had to share! These mini pumpkin cakes will add some flair to your holiday baking and is sure to be a favorite even Martha Stewart would love. :) If you try this wonderful recipe, let me know how it turns out - happy baking!
Hands-On Time: 30 min.; Total Time: 1 hr., 44 min. (including Caramel-Rum Glaze).
Makes 8 pumpkins
3/4 cup butter, softened
1 (8-oz.) package cream cheese, softened
2 cups sugar
2 large eggs
1 1/2 cups canned pumpkin
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
Caramel-Rum Glaze* (or Vanilla Glaze)
Caramel Stems, Leaves, and Vines (optional, instructions below)
1. Preheat oven to 350°. Beat butter and cream cheese at medium speed with an electric mixer until creamy. Gradually add sugar, beating until light and fluffy. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating just until blended after each addition. Stir in pumpkin and vanilla.
2. Combine flour and next 4 ingredients; gradually add to butter mixture, beating at low speed just until blended. Spoon batter into 2 lightly greased pumpkin-shaped muffin pans, filling three-fourths full.
3. Bake at 350° for 24 to 26 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pans on wire racks 5 minutes. Remove from pans to wire racks, and cool completely (about 30 minutes).
4. Cut rounded tops off muffins to make them flat. Invert top muffins onto bottom muffins, forming pumpkins. Drizzle Caramel-Rum Glaze over pumpkins. Decorate with Caramel Stems, Leaves, and Vines, if desired.
CARAMEL STEM: Press 1 caramel between fingers, lengthening to 1 1/2 to 2 inches to form a stem. Curl stem gently.
CARAMEL LEAVES: Roll caramels into 2-inch squares on a flat surface, using a rolling pin. Cut into leaves, using a paring knife. Gently press tips of leaves to flatten, if desired. Score leaves, using a paring knife. Pinch bottoms of leaves together.
CARAMEL VINES: Cut 1 caramel into 3 equal pieces. Squeeze each piece gently to flatten, and roll between hands or on a flat surface into a long thin rope. Twist ends to curl.