It’s been too long since I made a wreath cake. Way too long. I enjoy working with buttercream, actually I prefer it over fondant but for certain
designs fondant works better. Today we are going to make delicious Pumpkin Sponge Cake that is super moist and full for fall flavors. I really love this time of the year. My choice of buttercream for this cake is meringue buttercream, don’t get me wrong I like other buttercreams and my personal favorite is flour buttercream but for this and especially to make the decorations I like using Swiss Buttercream. I flavored buttercream with Maple Flavoring. It freezes well and decorations hold up nicely on the cake. I also made a video on how to fill, ice and mainly how to pipe all the buttercream decorations on the cake. You can see the Tutorial here.
Don’t worry, buttercream pumpkins and flower are really easy to make. I used Swiss Buttercream that I color with Americolor Gel Food Colorings.
Pumpkin Sponge Cake Fall Wreath Cake
Three 6 inch Pumpkin Sponge Cake (recipe below)
2 batches Swiss Buttercream (recipe below)
To ice the outside of the cake I used uncolored buttercream and then to create a sort of a watercolor effect I used buttercream colored with Royal Blue Coloring and I added a touch of Black to make more like grayish blue, if that makes sense.
To make buttercream decorations you need
Parchment Squares – my favorite Parchment paper
I colored my buttercream with Orange Gel Food Coloring and I added a touch of Ivory Gel Coloring to mute it down a notch.
I also used Red Food Color and added a touch of brown for second pumpkins.
I used left over buttercream from icing the cake and I just added a bit more Black Food Coloring to it.
White Daisy Flowers I used
I used uncolored buttercream for the petals and for the center I used buttercream I used to make the leaves.
Round Piping Tip #2
Wreath Branch Base
I used Brown Food Coloring and a touch of black to color buttercream.
Round Piping Tip #3 or #4 will work as well
Round Piping Tip #2 for smaller lines that go across
I really like how orange pumpkins turned out using Piping Tip #98.
Make sure you freeze all the decorations for at least 45 minutes, or longer as needed for them to be firm.
To color my buttercream I used Americolor Royal Blue and I added touch of Black Food Coloring to get this nice grayish tone.
Chill the cake before you add the wreath and then chill it again for 20 minutes before attaching frozen buttercream decorations. You can definitely make this cake ahead of time and freeze it for later.
- 4 egg whites
- 4 egg yolks
- 3/4 cup pumpkin puree
- 200 grams sugar
- 4 tbl oil vegetable, coconut
- 4 tbl warm water
- 200 grams all purpose flour
- 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
- 1/4 tsp ginger
- 1/8 tsp ground cloves
Preheat oven 350F
Butter and flour your baking pans, line the bottom with parchment.
In a medium bowl sift together flour, spices, salt and baking powder, set aside.
In a clean bowl, whip egg whites with a pinch of salt, once soft peaks are formed, gradually add 1/2 of the sugar, whip until shiny and stiff peaks are formed. Don’t whip it too long though, you want the egg whites to retain moisture, turn the mixer off at once when stiff peaks are formed.
Scrape the whipped egg white into another bowl. Set aside. Put all the egg yolks into the mixing bowl you just used for making the meringue. It is okay, it doesn’t have to be spotless. Add remaining sugar to the egg yolks, using same wire whip attachment, mix the egg yolks, first at medium speed and then at high speed, once your egg yolks have doubled in volume and became pale in color, add pumpkin puree, beat well then add oil, by tablespoon, mixing well after each addition, then add warm water, by tablespoon, mixing well after each addition. Add vanilla extract and beat until combined. Turn off the mixer.
Using fine mesh strainer sift about 1/3 of flour into the egg yolk pumpkin mixture and carefully fold the flour in with a spatula, then add about 1/3 of whipped egg white mixture and fold in. Continue with rest of the flour and whipped egg whites, until no streaks are visible. Be gentle and don’t over mix. You are looking for a light and airy batter.
Fill your buttered and floured pans and bake until tooth pick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 25-30 minutes. Let cool slightly, remove from the baking pans, and cool completely before filling and decorating.
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 4 egg whites 120grams, if they weigh more it is fine, I often have egg whites that are larger and 4 will weigh 130grams, it is fine to use them.
- 3- to 4 sticks(1stick 113grams) of room temperature unsalted butter you can experiment by adding less, some people like it with less butter, it is up to you.
- pinch of salt or 1/2tsp cream of tartar
- 1 tbl vanilla extract
Combine egg whites, sugar and salt in a mixer bowl, set it over a pot of simmering water and whisk until sugar is dissolved and candy thermometer reaches 160F, continue whisking at this temperature for 5 minutes.
Then set the mixer on your stand mixer base and beat on high until stiff peaks are formed, once the outside of the bowl is lukewarm, to the touch you can start adding soften butter small piece at a time. Beat well. Keep adding all of the butter. Mixture may curdle, this is normal just keep beating using a wire attachment. Add vanilla and other flavorings as desired. For this recipe I used vanilla extract and also oil based maple flavoring.
- If using in the heat of the summer, you can substitute 1stick of butter for shortening that can hold up to hotter temperatures, I personally try to avoid using traditional shortening, you can try using other better for your shortenings that are available. In the hot months I also like to add about 2tbl meringue powder per batch.
- To color buttercream I use gel food colorings. I take a small portion of uncolored buttercream (3 tbl to 1/4 cup), I place it into a small microwave safe bowl. I add coloring into the small bowl and stir well, then I microwave it on high for about 5 seconds. Heat activates the color pigments, buttercream will liquifies, this is normal, immediately pour microwaved portion it uncolored buttercream and stir well, if darker colors are desired, repeat the process. If buttercream is too soft for you to pipe you can refrigerate buttercream for 10 minutes until it firms up a little or have a batch with chilled water on hand to cool your hands in between to prevent buttercream softening while you are piping. You freeze buttercream or store in the fridge for up to 2 weeks.