Pumpkin, Polenta and Rum cake

Pumpkin (1)Pumpkin and rum cake (14)

The pumpkin puree required for this cake used up about half of the big pumpkin I bought that rainy Saturday. It’s nice to do everything yourself when you have the time, as I did that afternoon, but as I squeezed the boiled pumpkin to get as much moisture out as possible, my mind wandered to the tins of pumpkin puree which are in every shop in America and Canada, but only found in specialist shops here in Ireland. I’m definitely going to give them a go sometime.

This recipe came from a lady whose Instagram page I found by accident, it’s called pardonyourfrench, and it’s written by Audrey, who’s French and lives in Canada. She described this cake as like a pumpkin pie, but without the pastry.

It’s got Polenta, which is a finely ground corn, in it for texture, and when she mentioned about adding Rum, she had me!

See how you get on –


  • A large mixing bowl
  • 9inch23cm  spring-release cake tin, lined
  • baking tray
  • Hand-held whisk
  • Weighing scales

INGREDIENTS:                                   Pumpkin and Rum cake (7)

  • 375g Pumpkin Puree
  • 150g Polenta
  • 1 tblsp (12.5g) cornflour
  • A pinch of salt
  • 100g sugar
  • 1tsp vanilla extract
  • 4 large eggs
  • 75g unsalted butter – melted
  • 330ml milk
  • 1 tblsp (14ml) rum


  • Heat the oven to 180 degrees Fan
  • Into the large bowl put: the Pumpkin puree, the polenta, the cornflour, the eggs, the sugar, salt and the vanilla extract.

Pumpkin and Rum cake (2)

  • Using your hand-held whisk, give it a stir until everything comes together. This happens very quickly.
  • Add the Milk, and stir in.
  • Add the melted butter and stir in
  • Finally, add the Rum.
  • This will give you a fairly liquid result, but that’s as it should be.
  • Put the lined tin onto the baking sheet and pour in the mixture.

Pumpkin and Rum cake (5)

  • Put it into the oven and give it 45 minutes. (check your oven manual for the correct shelf – I used the 2nd shelf in my Neff oven)
  • After that time, have a look. It should be browned towards the edges and with a little wobble in the middle.

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  • If you’re not convinced, give it another 10 minutes and check again. If it’s getting too brown, cover the top with tin foil.
  • Remove the tin from the oven and place it on a rack to cool. Don’t even contemplate removing it from the tin, or you’ll have the same disaster that I had, when a cake broke in half on me, for the first time ever!   #theairwasblue 😉
  • To be safe, leave it for at least an hour to let the centre firm up, then remove from the tin and allow to cool completely.
  • According to Audrey, the French eat this as it is; the Americans like it with whipped cream, and she likes it with a topping of Greek yoghurt.

Pumpkin and rum cake (12)



  • To say that I was annoyed at ripping my creation in half is an understatement, but I prefer to look on the bright side of things – namely: every mistake that you will make in your kitchen, especially when you’re starting off, has already been made by me, so don’t ever let a disaster put you off! Important lesson there..
  • The untimely destruction of the cake (No, I’m not going to show you photos) meant that I was able to taste as much of it as I liked, and it’s DELICIOUS! I saved enough of it to allow us to have a yummy dessert this evening, so it’s not all bad. We’ll be having it with cream.  I’m not sure that I can taste the Rum though..
  • Mr Saturday Night had some points to make – he thought it would be better with the zest of an orange and some cinnamon powder added. He may well be right.
  • I though it was nicer when slightly warm, (even if it was in two pieces) so 10-20 seconds in the microwave might be a good idea.



I started writing down recipes in an old copybook when I was about 16. With 6 children at home, my Mother was always glad of a hand in the kitchen, and really allowed us to experiment - as long as we washed up afterwards, and left the kitchen immaculate! Having a tidy kitchen has followed me through my life, as has the habit of writing down my favourite recipes; except that these days I write them for my website, and add photographs when I can. The website really started when it occurred to me that my daughter might like to have these recipes when I've forgotten them. In my early days of cooking for family and friends, I used to phone my Mum all the time to ask her for the recipe for some of our favourite family dinners. She rarely had a recipe to hand - I think, like me, she made a lot of it up as she went along.. So welcome to Eating for Ireland - these are the recipes that my friends and family having been eating these past 40 years.. yes, I truly am ancient! They are tried and tested, and have worked for me for all that time - I have updated them as new ingredients became available - I really hope you'll find something that you can make into a family favourite of your own. You don't have to tell anyone where you found these great new dishes that you're serving up - it can be our little secret, but I'd really love it if you could give me a sneaky 'follow' on Facebook and Instagram.. So off you go - have a good rummage around, you're bound to find something new! My sincere thanks to all of you who have found a recipe that you liked and dropped me a line to tell me - I really do love to hear from you! Happy Cooking! Becks xx

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