1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1-1/2 cup granulated sugar (divided)
2 tablespoons finely grated orange zest
3 large eggs, two of them separated, all at room temperature
1 cup pumpkin puree, home made or pure canned solid pack pumpkin
1-1/2 cup flour
1/2 cup cake flour (not self rising)
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
Juice of one large orange
Preheat oven to 350-degrees. Butter a 9-inch fluted tube pan, set aside. Cream together the butter, 1 cup of sugar and orange zest until light and fluffy. Add the whole egg and two egg yolks, one at a time, beating well and scraping down sides of bowl between each addition. Beat in pumpkin.
Sift together the flours, baking powder and salt. Add to pumpkin batter in three or four stages, blending gently but thoroughly after each addition. Stir in final addition of dry ingredients by hand if you have been using a mixer, so as not to over work the batter.
In a clean, small bowl, whip egg whites until they hold soft peaks. Fold into batter, then scrape batter into prepared pan and smooth the surface. Bake in center of preheated oven, 50 to 60 minutes, or until top of cake is springy when lightly touched. Also check to see if the sides begin to pull away from sides of pan and a wooden skewer inserted into center of cake comes out clean. Cool in pan ten minutes, then invert onto a wire rack and cool completely. This cake keeps well for several days. Wrap it well and refrigerate or you can freeze it up to two months.
For the syrup, combine orange juice, remaining 1/2 cup sugar in a small saucepan over low heat, and stir until sugar dissolves. Increase heat, bringing syrup to a boil. Boil without stirring two minutes, then use immediately or allow to cool and refrigerate for up to three days (reheat gently).
To serve, put one slice of cake on each plate. Spoon a few tablespoons of warm syrup over each piece, and accompany with a scoop of thick vanilla yogurt, fat-free or light whipped cream or fat-free ice cream for dessert.
Recipe makes 12 servings.
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