Pumpkin Fruit Cake With Cardamon Cream Cheese Icing


This delicious, light fruit cake was whipped up for the December Balanced Life retreat by Jahnavi, who graciously shared the recipe. The warm pumpkin gives the cake a glowing rich golden colour and the ginger and pineapple add a delightful, tropical element. Using the seeds from the vanilla pod gives the cream cheese icing an interesting speckled appearance and dreamy flavour. We served the cake with refreshing iced chai on a scorching hot afternoon. Wish you were there!


  • 1 ½ cups warm mashed pumpkin
  • 225g butter at room temperature
  • 1 ½ cups honey
  • 2 cups flour, sifted in
  • 1 ½ tsp baking soda
  • 2 tsp mixed spice
  • 1 tsp cardamon powder
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp vanilla essence
  • 400g mixed dried fruit
  • ½ cup crystalized ginger, roughly chopped
  • ½ cup dried pineapple, roughly chopped


Preheat the oven to 160°C (325°F).

In a large mixing bowl, blend together the pumpkin, butter and honey. Add the remaining ingredients and mix well.

Pour into an oiled and floured cake tin and bake until a skewer comes out clean, approx 1 – 1 ½ hours.

Cardamon Cream Cheese Icing

  • 1 packet of cream cheese
  • 1 vanilla pod
  • 1 – 2 tsp cardamon powder
  • 200g icing sugar (approx)
  • Juice of 1 lemon

Beat cream cheese till smooth, add some of the icing sugar. Then open the vanilla pod and scrape out the vanilla seeds into the icing, add cardamom, more icing sugar and the lemon, keep mixing and adding more icing sugar until mixture is quite firm yet still spreadable. When cake is cooled, smooth on the icing.