Spiced Chocolate, Pumpkin and Pecan Cake

I was paging through my Eric Lanlard, “Chocolat”, recipe book the other day, for some inspiration. This book is not only exquisite, but every glorious recipe is dedicated to chocolate! (Some pages might show a few drool stains… Just kidding ;))

When I find a recipe I’d love to recreate, I know instantly. It practically jumps off the page and says, “Make me!” “Make me!” My heart beats faster, my palms start to sweat, I get this bubbling feeling of excitement welling up from my stomach, my lips form a huge smile and my mind races, scanning through all the possibilities for adaptation as I skim through the recipe.

This is the perfect Winter cake. Imagine the scents of cinnamon, vanilla and chocolate circling through your home, from the kitchen, and enveloping everything in pure, comforting deliciousness.

Put your feet up as you snuggle under a throw with a steaming cup of tea or coffee and savour a moist, decadent, spiced, chocolate slice of heaven.

Spiced chocolate, pumpkin and pecan cake

Serves 8 – 10

Prep time: 20 minutes, plus cooling and resting overnight

Cooking time: 1 hour and 30 minutes



1/2 cup pecan nuts
1 tsp cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp olive oil
1 cup dark chocolate, roughly chopped (I use Cocoafair’s 95%)
1/2 cup butter, plus extra for greasing (replace the butter with coconut oil for a dairy free version)
1 cup Xylitol ( I use Sally-Ann’s birch bark Xylitol)
4 medium / 3 large free range eggs (I use Solitaire free range eggs)
3 tsp vanilla extract ( I use NoMU’s vanilla extract)
1 cup water
1.5 cups ground pumpkin seeds
3 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp bicarb
1/2 cup grated raw pumpkin


Preheat oven to 170 degrees Celsius
Grease a 23cm springform cake tin and line with baking paper
Coat the pecan nuts with the cayenne and olive oil. Spread out on a lined baking tray and bake for 10 minutes, until roasted. Leave to cool and roughly chop
Melt the chocolate and butter in the microwave for 1 minute or until smooth with no lumps
Beat the eggs and Xylitol until light and fluffy
Beat in the chocolate mixture
Add the vanilla and water and beat again
Mix the ground pumpkin seeds, cinnamon, baking powder and bicarb together and fold into the chocolate mixture
Fold in the pumpkin and chopped pecans
Pour the mixture into the cake tin and bake for 1 hour and 20 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the centre of the cake comes out clean
Leave to cool in the tin for 10 minutes, then turn out onto the cooling rack to cool completely
Wrap the cake in cling wrap and store in the fridge for 24 hours
Allow to return to room temperature, dust with cocoa, slice and serve