Hi everyone! It’s Brandy from Nutmeg Nanny!
This weekend I had extra special guests over to my house for lunch. I wanted to make something special and this cake totally fit the bill! It’s perfect for Fall and would easily fit onto your Thanksgiving table. I sadly do not have a picture of the inside of the cake because we devoured it….eek! What kind of food blogger am I! The good thing is that it was really delicious and hopefully you will trust me on that 🙂 The cake was perfectly spiced and the addition of crystallized ginger really brought the lovely warm ginger flavor front and center. The biggest thing to remember about this cake is to make sure you do not over bake…it is not forgiving! When perfectly cooked it remains dense but moist and packed with flavor. Enjoy!!!
The original recipe called for maple coated pecans which I left off (not a huge fan of nuts) but I will include the recipe because I know I tend to be the odd ball out when it comes to not liking nuts….
Maple-Gingerbread Layer Cake with Salted Maple Caramel Sauce:
3/4 cup pecan halves, toasted
1/4 cup pure maple syrup (preferably Grade B)
Coarse kosher salt
2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons Chinese five-spice powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon coarse kosher salt
1/3 cup chopped crystallized ginger (1 1/2 to 2 ounces)
1 cup maple sugar
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter – room temperature
2 large eggs
3/4 cup hot water
2/3 cup mild-flavored (light) molasses
1 1/3 cups chilled crème fraîche
1 1/3 cups chilled heavy whipping cream
1/2 cup maple sugar
6 tablespoons powdered sugar
* I added a couple dashes of chinese five spice to add some flavor…I recommend this!
Salted maple caramel sauce (recipe below)
Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter and flour two 9-inch-diameter cake pans with 1 1/2-inch-high sides. Combine first 4 ingredients in processor; add ginger. Blend until ginger is finely ground, about 1 minute. Using mixer, beat maple sugar and butter in large bowl until fluffy. Beat in eggs 1 at a time (batter may look curdled). Stir 3/4 cup hot water and molasses in small bowl. Beat dry ingredients into butter mixture in 4 additions alternately with molasses mixture in 3 additions. Divide batter between prepared pans (about 2 1/2 cups each). Bake until tester inserted into center comes out clean, 30 to 32 minutes. Cool cakes in pans on racks.
Cut around pan sides to loosen cake layers; turn out onto racks. Place 1 cake layer on platter. Spread with 1 1/3 cups frosting. Drizzle with 3 tablespoons caramel sauce. Top with second cake layer. Spread remaining frosting smoothly over top and sides of cake. Drizzle top of cake with 3 tablespoons sauce. Cover with cake dome; chill at least 1 hour.
Salted-Maple Caramel Sauce:
1/2 cup maple sugar
3/4 cup heavy whipping cream
1/8 teaspoon coarse kosher salt
5 to 6 drops imitation maple extract
Melt butter in heavy medium saucepan over medium heat. Add sugar. Whisk until sugar melts and mixture is thick and boiling, 2 to 3 minutes. Gradually whisk in cream. Bring sauce to boil, whisking often. Boil until sauce thickens enough to coat spoon and is reduced to 1 cup, whisking often, 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from heat. Whisk in coarse salt and extract. DO AHEAD Can be made 1 week ahead. Cool, cover, and chill.