How to make chocolate bundt cake with maple and pumpkin

Melanie Johnson's chocolate bundt cake is a perfect mix of indulgence and using up leftovers.

‘Pumpkins are the perfect seasonal decoration and their flesh will never be wasted in my kitchen’ says our kitchen garden chef Melanie Johnson.

The simplest way cooking them is to dice into half-inch cubes and roast for 20 minutes — roast them with red onion wedges and they make a wonderful pasta dish with chilli, garlic and fontina cheese.

Recipe: Chocolate and pumpkin bundt cake with maple-syrup glaze


For the bundt pan

  • 15g butter
  • 15g plain flour

For the cake

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  • 325g unsalted butter, melted
  • 500g golden caster sugar
  • 5 eggs
  • 120ml soured cream
  • 1tspn vanilla-bean paste
  • 325g plain flour
  • 2tspns baking powder
  • 30g cocoa powder
  • 75ml boiling water
  • 200g pumpkin, cooked and puréed, or canned
  • ½tspn each ground cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger

For the glaze

  • 225g icing sugar, sifted
  • 50g unsalted butter
  • ½tspn vanilla-bean paste
  • 180ml maple syrup

To decorate

  • Pumpkin seeds


Preheat your oven to 160°C fan/180°C/350°F/gas mark 4.

Melt the butter and, using a pastry brush, brush it evenly over the inside of a bundt pan, being careful to get into every nook and cranny. I find it easier to brush from the base up to prevent any butter pooling. Sift over the flour, moving the pan from side to side to evenly coat. Turn it upside down and give it a final tap to remove any excess, then set aside.

In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the butter and sugar together. Add the eggs, soured cream and vanilla and mix until completely combined. Fold through the flour and baking powder.

Place the cocoa powder in a small bowl and pour over the boiling water. Mix to a paste. In a separate bowl, mix together well the pumpkin purée and the spices.

Divide the cake mixture in half and add the cocoa mixture to one bowl and the spiced pumpkin to the other. Mix them both until homogenous. Pour half the chocolate batter into the prepared pan, then add all the pumpkin batter, followed by the remaining chocolate batter. Use a skewer or toothpick to swirl the batters gently together. Bake for 1 hour 10/15 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the cake comes out clean. Leave to cool in the pan on a wire rack so the air can circulate for 15 minutes, before inverting onto the rack to cool completely.

For the maple glaze, whisk together the icing sugar, butter, vanilla and maple syrup. Put a plate beneath the bundt on the wire rack and pour the glaze over the cake. Pour the glaze collected on the plate over the cake again to cover it entirely and scatter over the pumpkin seeds. This bundt will keep well in an airtight container for up to five days.

From Bundt by Melanie Johnson (Ebury Press, £28)