When I saw this recipe in Taste of the South’s Best Comfort Food 2011, I was intrigued by the bourbon glaze. When I looked further and saw that butternut squash was one of the ingredients, I was further intrigued because I’ve never baked with butternut squash before. In fact in my never-ending quest for new recipes, I rarely come across a recipe utilizing butternut squash. It really is a neglected vegetable.
So neglected in fact, it wasn’t even included in the name of the recipe. The original recipe was just called Bourbon-Glazed Spice Cake, but I’ve renamed it here to give butternut squash the limelight.
Butternut squash is very similar in taste and texture to pumpkin, so an equal amount of canned pumpkin could be substituted for the squash if you didn’t feel like baking the squash and processing it.
The glaze is definitely boozy and maybe isn’t the best thing to give kids unless you feel like developing their taste for Kentucky’s Finest at a young age. I used Maker’s Mark and the glaze turned out buttery, sweet, creamy, and boozy. Pure heaven.
This recipe makes a lot of glaze and the cake will literally be swimming in it. That’s a good thing.
The cake itself tasted very nice, but it didn’t quite fill the bundt pan. I think this was due to an insufficient amount of batter and not due to any “rising” problems in the oven. As a result, the cake didn’t have much height to it. If you have a smaller Bundt pan, you might want to use that or a 9-by-5 inch loaf pan instead.
Ultimately, it really doesn’t matter. The cake part is just a vehicle for getting the bourbon glaze in your mouth.
Bourbon-Glazed Butternut Squash Cake
- 1 large butternut squash, cut in half lengthwise
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 2 teaspoons ground ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1/2 cup plus 6 tablespoons butter, softened and divided
- 2 cups firmly packed brown sugar, divided
- 2 large eggs
- 1/2 cup fresh orange juice
- 1/4 cup bourbon
- 1 cup heavy whipping cream
- 1 cup confectioners’ sugar
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Spray a baking sheet with cooking spray and set aside.
- Use a spoon to scoop out squash seeds. Place squash cut side down on prepared baking sheet. Bake until tender, about 40 minutes. Let cool and then scoop out squash pulp.
- Place pulp in a food processor and process until smooth. Measure out 1 1/3 cups and save the rest for another use.
- Reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees. Spray a Bundt pan with nonstick cooking spray and set aside.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, salt, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, and cloves.
- In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons butter and 1 1/2 cups brown sugar at medium speed until fluffy. Add eggs one at a time and beat just until combined, scraping down sides of bowl as necessary.
- Add orange juice and reserved 1 1/3 cups butternut squash pulp, beating until smooth.
- With mixer on medium-low speed, gradually add flour mixture and mix just until combined. Pour into prepared pan.
- Bake for approximately 40 minutes, until a wooden pick inserted in the center comes out clean. Let cool in pan 20 minutes. Invert cake onto a wire rack and let cool completely.
- In a heavy saucepan, combine remaining 4 tablespoons butter, 1/2 cup brown sugar, and bourbon. Bring to a boil and remove from heat.
- Add cream and confectioners’ sugar to saucepan and whisk to combine. Return pan to heat and bring mixture to a boil. Cook until thickened, about 8 minutes. Let cool to room temperature. This will take about an hour. Pour over cooled cake.
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