Like everyone else in the universe, I love the welcoming of fall: the crisp weather, the changing leaves, the chance to get into the kitchen and do some more serious cooking, and of course, everything pumpkin. Pumpkin quick breads, pumpkin muffins, pumpkin pies, pumpkin as a side on our dinner plates; I’ll maybe even treat myself to a pumpkin spice latte at Starbucks. This pumpkin spice Swiss roll cake is my first foray into the pumpkin season of 2014.
I found the recipe here, but I improvised it a little with a recipe I found in a neat little book I bought that I had been secretly coveting off and on for a number of years (more on that later) and got an entire second sponge out of it for rolling later. The frosting recipe was from here, but I’d suggest keeping the amount of confectioners’ sugar to below four cups – it was sweet and rich enough for even the sweetest sweet tooth in the house (and if you knew him, you’d know that that’s really saying something!) I made the cake yesterday and it’s already gone, so I guess you could say that it was a hit. I guess I truly wasn’t the only one who was looking forward to fall flavors.
Now, back to the book. Back about thirteen years ago, I thought about opening a little local coffee shop in downtown Concord NH (because that’s where I was living at the time) in a space that had opened up in a local historic hotel. I had envisioned serving great dark-roasted coffee and the slices of the fanciest cakes and tortes around. I remember seeing such places in my time in Germany while in the armed forces and I thought it might be nice to have an operation like that here. I of course never opened the place, but I remember seeing a book at about that time that had recipes for all the sorts of sweets I wanted to offer. I filed it away in the back of my mind and would think about it and my dream coffeehouse every once in a while.
Now that I have the book, I’m going all Julie and Julia on it and making it my mission to bake everything in this book over the winter. There will be tears, there will be triumphs, there may even be cake thrown across the room in frustration. This book will become my best friend and my most bitter adversary. There Will Be Torte. But at the end of it, I’ll have a sense of accomplishment and an idea of what opening my own little Kaffeehaus might have been like. I think six months should be plenty of time to make this happen, right? Anyone think I’m nuts?
Yay – a mission for my blog! Stay tuned!