Preparation / Directions:
Timing Tip: Can be stored at room temperature up to 5 days.
1. Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease two 9-inch round cake pans. Line bottoms with waxed paper.
2. CAKE: Mix flour, cocoa powder spice, baking powder and baking soda. Beat butter and granulated sugar in a large bowl with electric mixer until pale and fluffy. Beat in eggs one at a time until mixture looks like mayonnaise. With mixer on low speed, beat in pumpkin, milk and vanilla (mixture will look curdled). Gradually beat in flour mixture, scraping down sides of bowl with rubber spatula 2 or 3 times. Divide batter between prepared pans. Smooth tops.
3. Bake 40 to 45 minutes until pick inserted in the center comes out clean.. Cool in pans on wire rack 10 minutes. Run knife around cakes to loosen. Invert on wire rack, remove pans, peel off waxed paper and let cakes cool completely.
4. FROSTING: Put brown sugar, butter and milk in a medium-size saucepan and bring to a gentle boil. Stir until butter melts, sugar is disolved and mixture is smooth. 8. Using a hand-held electric mixer gradually beat confectioners' sugar and extract into hot mixture. Or pour hot mixture into a bowl and beat in sugar and extract with a stand mixture. 9. Immediately place 1 cake layer upside-down on serving plate. Spread with warm frosting (if frosting cools it will set and a crust may form on the surface. Beat again until smooth.) Place other layer right side up over sides and top. Cover with plastic wrap or store in cake keepe