Butternut Squash Cake ft. Pumpkin Spice Ricotta Frosting + Cranberry Sauce

Tis the season - for everyone from Martha Stewart to Pinterest to Buzzfeed to kick into high gear and overwhelm you with the infinite ways to cook your turkey, mix up your side dishes, and revamp your pumpkin pies. Most people stick to their beloved traditional menus which have stood the test of time but if you have the chance to contribute a flashy new dish to the table, there are some a-m-a-z-i-n-g- recipes floating around the Internet this time of year - check 'em out.

This one is simple and sweet and draws its flavors from typical Thanksgiving ingredients: earthy and savory butternut squash, pumpkin spice, and of course - cranberries. I had never made cranberry sauce before, so cross that off the culinary bucket list, and it adds a tartness in contrast to the nuttier flavors in the cake and frosting. It also works well on the cupcakes as a drizzle and as a marbled texture - will definitely add a pop of color to any dessert table.

The cornucopia is a symbol of harvest and abundance, and its texture can be replicated in frosting form with a small round tip and the basketweave tip. I once used that tip on a sombrero cake and it works just as well here for the braided border.

Happy Thanksgiving, be thankful, and get yer elastic waistbands ready.