Carol’s Pumpkin Crack

The wife of one of Jerri’s nephews brought crack to the family feast we shared recently. At least, that’s what she said it was when I asked. It turned out to be a moist pudding-type cake loaded with flavor.

Here is Carol’s explanation of how she came to make crack.

“I first served this dessert at a church leadership event.  As the meeting went on during the evening, I noticed that several folks kept returning to the buffet to get ‘just a few more bites.’  Someone later joked that it was addictive—once you start, you can’t stop. Thus the name, Pumpkin Crack.  Now I get a lot of requests to bring Crack to our get togethers.  Enjoy!”

Amen!

INGREDIENTS:
1 15 oz. can pumpkin
1 14 oz. can sweetened condensed milk
2 large eggs
1/2 cup sugar
1 1/4 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ginger
1/2 tsp. nutmeg
1/4 tsp. allspice
1 box regular yellow cake mix
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
1 scant cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

PROCEDURE:
Preheat the oven to 350º. Grease a nine by thirteen-inch baking pan and set it aside.

Put the pumpkin, condensed milk, eggs, sugar and spices into a mixing bowl. Using a hand or electric mixer, beat the mixture until it is smooth and everything is blended together.

Pour the pumpkin mixture into the pan. Sprinkle about a third of the cake mix over the top. Use a circular motion to swirl the mix into the wet ingredients with a knife. Sprinkle the rest of the dry cake mix on top so it covers the batter evenly. Dribble the melted butter over the mix, and sprinkle the chips over the top.

Cover the pan with foil. Place the cake on a center shelf in the oven, and bake it for twenty-five minutes. Remove the foil and bake for another fifteen to twenty-five minutes, or until it has begun to brown around edges. Stick a toothpick near the middle of the cake. If it comes out clean, the cake is done.

Remove the cake from the oven and allow it to cool completely before cutting and serving. Or you can jab a spoon into it, put it on a kitchen counter or buffet table and let guests take as much as they want. This option makes it easier for people to come back for more.

NOTES: You can substitute two and a half teaspoons of pumpkin pie spice for the individual spices. Use a plain yellow cake mix, not one with pudding in the mix.