We are a group of home bakers helping each other to achieve baking perfection.  Baking partners was begun by Swathi at Zesty South Indian Kitchen.
Baking a homemade bread, cake or cookies will give the best outcome. However in order to achieve the best results, a  perfect recipe and the right techniques are required.
We are a small group of home baker friends, who love and want to learn more about the nook and corners of baking.  We are planning to try out recipes from books/magazines and cooking shows.  Every member gets a chance to present their choice of recipe and share important points with the rest of the group. The main purpose of this group is to learn the techniques, critic procedures if there are ways to improve and to eat delicious food. 

This month’s theme is Pumpkin.  We were given 3 recipes to choose from; Reshmi of Easy Cook suggested Pumpkin chocolate chips Muffin from Joy of baking  which is  adapted form This Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffin recipe is adapted from Baking from the Heart, a collaborative cookbook with Michael J Rose or Priya R of Cook Like Priya suggested Chocolate pumpkin cupcake with orange cream cheese frosting from Country living (which is what I chose) or Julie of Erivum Puliyumm suggested a vegan pumpkin cup cake EGGLESS PUMPKIN CUPCAKES WITH SPICED BUTTER CREAM & CANDIED PECANS.


As with anything I cook, bake or create I base it on my families likes and dislikes along with what I have on hand that needs to be used up.  In this recipe I substituted lemon for orange because I have this amazing Lorann Professional Kitchen Lemon Bakery Emulsion. I also added a square of Baker’s semi-sweet baking chocolate. Good choices as this frosting turned out like eating candy.

Chocolate Pumpkin cupcakes with orange lemon cream cheese frosting from Country living.  You can see the adaptation of this recipe here also.

Serves: 18 Edit
Yields: One 8-inch 3-layer cake or 36 cupcakes
Total Time: 1 hr 10 min
Oven Temp: 350˚

2 1/2 cup(s) all-purpose flour
2 tablespoon(s) all-purpose flour
1 cup(s) good-quality cocoa
2 tablespoon(s) good-quality cocoa
1 tablespoon(s) baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoon(s) baking soda
2 1/4 teaspoon(s) ground cinnamon
3/4 teaspoon(s) fresh-grated nutmeg
3/4 cup(s) buttermilk
1 1/2 cup(s) pumpkin purée
1 1/2 teaspoon(s) vanilla extract
2 1/4 stick(s) unsalted butter, softened
1 1/2 cup(s) (firmly packed) dark brown sugar
1 1/2 cup(s) granulated sugar
5 large eggs
Orange Cream-Cheese Frosting, (see link below)

  • Prepare cake pans: Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly butter three 8-inch cake pans and fit each bottom with an 8-inch circle of parchment paper. Lightly butter the parchment paper. Set aside.
  • Make the batter: Sift the flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and nutmeg in a large bowl and set aside. Combine the buttermilk, pumpkin, and vanilla in a medium bowl and set aside. Beat the butter and sugar together in a large bowl, with an electric mixer set on medium speed, until fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition, until the mixture is smooth and light. Alternately add the flour mixture and buttermilk mixture, blending well after each addition.
  • Bake the cake: Divide the batter among the pans and bake until a wooden skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean — about 35 minutes. Cool the cakes in the pan for 20 minutes. Remove cakes and cool. (For cupcakes: Heat oven to 375 degrees F. Place cupcake liners in standard cupcake tins and fill each with 1/4 cup of batter. Bake for 22 minutes.)
  • Assemble the cake: Trim each of the layers. Place one layer on a cake plate and top with one third of the frosting. Repeat with the second and third layers. (To ensure that the cake layers do not shift, cut three skewers to 1/4 inch shorter than the full height of the cake and insert them before icing the top layer.) Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Orange Cream-Cheese Frosting (I used the frosting below)
1 package(s) (8-ounce) cream cheese softened
1/4 cup(s) (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, softened
1 tablespoon(s) fresh orange juice
1 teaspoon(s) grated orange zest
1/2 teaspoon(s) pure vanilla extract
4 cup(s) confectioners’ sugar
1/4 teaspoon(s) orange food coloring

Blend the cream cheese ,butter, orange juice, orange zest, and vanilla in a large bowl, using an electric mixer set at medium speed, until smooth.
Add the sugar and continue to beat until light and creamy — about 3 more minutes.

CHOCOLATE LEMON CREAM CHEESE FROSTING – this frosting turned out fabulous – like eating fudge!
1 package 8-ounce cream cheese softened
1/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 (1 ounce)  block Baker’s semi-sweet chocolate
1 teaspoon Lorann Professional Kitchen Lemon Bakery Emulsion

3 cups powdered sugar

  •  In a medium bowl beat cream cheese and butter until smooth.
  • Add lemon emulsion and vanilla.  Beat until well blended.
  • Add powdered sugar gradually until well blended and smooth.
  • Refrigerate 1 hour to set icing before serving.

Tips & Techniques
Start with chilled frosting and ice the layers to 1/2 inch from the edge to prevent too much dripping.