Orange Pumpkin Cornmeal Cake

Screen Shot 2015-10-05 at 11.34.45 AMLisi from Lisi’s Luscious Desserts shares the perfect cake recipe for fall. This cake is rich in color and texture. Though there are a number of steps, it’s so very very moist with a hint of citrus. It’s not as pumpkiny as you may think.
2 sticks or one cup of soft butter
1 cup sugar (which reader Anne pointed out that I forgot to include my in initial post as she was getting started.  thank you!)
1 tablespoon grated chopped orange zest
1 large egg
2 large eggs, separated
1 cup pumpkin puree (not pie filling)
1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 cup fine-ground yellow cornmeal
1/2 cup fresh orange juice from about 2 oranges
1/2 cup sugar
Butter a 9 inch bundt pan (click to show better butter detail – scroll down in baking tips) and preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Separate your eggs and keep both whites and yolks.  In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt, and cornmeal.
With your paddle attachment, beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy about 3-4 minutes.  Add the egg yolks (one at a time) and then the egg and beat well after each addition.  Scrape down the bowl, and beat again.  Beat in the pumpkin puree and vanilla.
In three additions, slowly add the reserved dry mix to the mixer – stirring on lowest speed (or gently by hand) until just incorporated.
Beat the 2 egg whites until soft peaks form.  I find this easier to do by hand with a whisk but you can certainly do with a hand mixer.  Or, you can transfer your pumpkin batter into another bowl, clean the mixing bowl well, and then beat your eggs with the whisk attachment.  (If you bake a lot, you may want to invest in a second bowl for your stand mixer.)
Then gently fold the egg whites into the pumpkin batter – until you can’t see any more streaks of whites, but be careful not to over due it here.
Pour the batter into the prepped pan and bake for about 40-45 minutes (mine took 43 minutes).  Let cool in pan for 10 minutes, then invert onto wire rack to cool.
While the cake is cooking, make the orange syrup.  Juice the oranges and place the fresh juice in a saucepan with the sugar.  Mix until sugar dissolves and there isn’t any white sugar on the bottom of the saucepan (it will burn if so).  Boil the mixture for about 2 minutes and then remove from heat.
When cake is warm, brush with the orange syrup.  You can repeat when cool if desired.  For service, dot the  syrup on the side of the cake (if plated) or serve on the side and accompany with vanilla yogurt.
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