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gingerbread snacking cake

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The holidays are approaching quickly.It’s a mad dash as I try to get out as many posts for holiday treats as possible. I can’t go a Christmas without making some type of gingerbread treat. Whether it be cake, cookie or both.

There is something about mixing up a batch of gingerbread snacking cake. Before the cake gets into the oven to perfume the house with the smells of  cloves,nutmeg,cinnamon and ginger you can smell the warm spices wafting up from the mixing bowl. This is an intensely spiced gingerbread as it contains three types of ginger; fresh,ground and candied. Though it may not look any different from a spice cake there is no mistaking its origins once you’ve had a bite.

This cake is festive enough to bring to the office for a holiday treat co-workers can enjoy with their morning coffee. Or serve it with whipped cream after dinner.

Recipe:Gingerbread snacking cake

Ingredients:

8 tablespoons(1 stick) unsalted butter,room temperature,plus more for the pan

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour,plus more for pan

2 teaspoons baking soda

2 teaspoons ground ginger

1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon ground cloves

1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 teaspoons baking powder

2/3 cup packed dark-brown sugar,preferably muscavado

1 cup unsulphured molasses

1 tablespoon freshly grated ginger

2 large eggs,room temperature,lightly beaten

confectioners’ sugar for dusting

Directions:

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Boil 1 cup water. Butter and flour a 9-by-13-inch cake pan;set aside.

In a bowl,combine boiling water and baking soda;set aside. In a large bowl sift together the flour,ground spices,salt and baking powder,and set aside.

In an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment,cream the butter until light. Beat in the brown sugar until fluffy. Beat in the molasses,grated ginger,baking soda mixture, and flour mixture.Beat in the eggs. Scrape down bowl and make sure all ingredients incorporated.

Pour the batter int the prepared pan;bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean about 30-35 minutes. Let cool on wire rack. Cut into squares,and dust with confectioners’ sugar just before serving and freshly whipped cream.

cranberry sauce and cranberry cake

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Hi all! Hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving. By now we all should be recovered from too much cooking, too much eating and too much shopping! I’m not exaggerating when I say I had dessert for breakfast, lunch and dinner three days in a row  after Thanksgiving. But no guilt here, I love good food.

I’m still sort of in the recovery stage so a quick post today. As you can see my pictures look a little different. I’ve been playing around with a new App that I fell in love with-Instagram. It works with my iPhone and I’m having fun learning all about it. From these pictures you can tell I’ve got more learning to do.

The pictures are of a very easy cranberry sauce I made-delicious, and a cake that I made using it the day after Thanksgiving. This cranberry sauce (I like to think of it more as jelly) is easy to make and leaves lots of room for your own additions. I used jalapeno peppers and oranges but there are many more possibilities that I’m sure you could come up with.

.

The cake is butter heaven. It’s an adaptation of  a cake from a chef that I really admire. She has a wonderful cookbook and this cake is her version of  a rustic spanish cake she had while visiting  Spain.I fell in love with the name and anytime I open this cookbook I go directly to the page with this cake recipe, look at the picture and mouth the words.

The cake is a Pastel Vasco with blackberry compote and poured cream. I could say that all day.

I had leftover cranberry sauce so I came up with the idea to put it in the cake instead of the blackberry compote. The cranberry sauce is similar to a compote, only no  alcohol, I just added a teaspoon of cornstarch to hold the juices together. I had to do something with the cranberry sauce because every chance I got I kept sticking a spoon into the jar and eating it. I figured making the cake was a better way to utilize the cranberry sauce and everyone would get the chance to have some.

The cake is easy and doesn’t require a stand mixer. You mix it by hand. Though I love my stand mixer I’m all for any cake that can be easily mixed in a bowl and this one fits the bill, because the butter is melted there is no need for creaming the butter and sugar.

If you made this cranberry sauce when I posted the recipe on Facebook and have leftovers-use it. If not it’s simple to make and will last two weeks in the refrigerator.

Recipe: Cranberry sauce and Cranberry cake

Directions for cranberry sauce:

1 bag frozen cranberries

1 1/2 cups sugar

1 cup water

1 jalapeno julienned,finely and seeds removed

1 long sliver orange peel, removed from a fresh orange using a peeler

Bring 1 cup of water to a boil,add the cranberries,sugar,jalapeno and orange peel. Simmer until berries skin pops and mixture thickens-about 15 minutes. Transfer to a bowl and cool completely . The mixture will thicken more as it sits. Store in jars in refrigerator for two weeks.

 Cranberry Cake-adapted,loosely, from Suzanne Goin

Ingredients:

2 1/4 cups + 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour

1 tablespoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

4 large eggs

1 cup + 1 tablespoon sugar, plus more to sprinkle on top

14 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted plus 3 tablespoons unmelted

2 tablespoons bourbon

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/4 c fresh orange juice,squeezed from 1 orange

3/4 cranberry sauce thickened with 1 teaspoon cornstarch on stovetop-cooled before using

Directions for cranberry cake:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Butter a 9×5 inch loaf pan with the  3 tablespoons softened butter

Sift the flour,and baking powder together in a bowl. Add the salt.

Whisk 3 eggs together in a large  bowl. Whisk in sugar,butter, bourbon,vanilla and orange juice. Fold in the dry ingredients and let the batter rest in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.

Remove batter from refrigerator and pour three-quarters of the batter into the loaf pan,spoon over the cranberry mixture,being careful to keep it away from the edges of the pan. Top with the remaining batter. It’s ok if some berries show through.

Beat the remaining egg and brush lightly over the batter. Sprinkle a handful of sugar over the top. bake about 1 hour,until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Let rest on a cooling rack about five minutes then carefully remove from pan and cool completely on rack.

Note: Suzanne suggests you slice this cake into 3/4 inch thick slices, lightly butter each side with softened butter and toast in a pan over the stove. Once toasted spoon more og the cranberry sauce over and serve with the slightly thickened cream. I hungrily suggest this also.

 

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