Saturday, December 17, 2016

Gingerbread Bundt Cake with Rum or Cream Cheese Glaze

Nothing says winter, and particularly Christmas, like an old-fashioned gingerbread. The flavor of gingerbread really comes from the combination of spices and molasses. Classic gingerbread is a dense, hard cookie, but you can enjoy these flavors in many forms.

Julian's Festive Gingerbread Bundt Cake
Today I'm making a gingerbread Bundt cake. If you're looking for a great gingerbread cupcake, use this recipe, as it has a looser crumb more suitable for cupcakes. This cake is more dense but equally flavorful.  You can make this and serve it with no topping at all, or just with some whipped cream. Today I'm adding a rum glaze and topping that with a cream cheese glaze, as I want to give it that holiday festive look. But this cake is equally good without either, or you can just use either one.

Just as good without glaze, and bit of whipped cream on each slice.
My original recipe came from King Arthur Flour. I've modified it to amp up the flavor. You can and should use their unbleached all-purpose flour if you have it. Otherwise, regular all-purpose flour will do.

Ingredients
Note: The butter and eggs should be room temperature before use.

Cake
2 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
3 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg,
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
3/4 cup (12 tablespoons) unsalted butter
1 1/2 cups brown sugar, packed
2 large eggs
1/2 cup dark molasses
1 cup water

Rum Glaze (optional)
1/3 cup dark/aged rum
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1.4 teaspoon butter rum flavor (optional)

Cream Cheese Glaze (optional)
4 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
1 cup powdered sugar
Milk or cream as needed, about 1/4 cup
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Instructions

Cake
Preheat oven to 350F degrees. Lightly grease a 10-12 cup Bundt pan. You can you a spray food release or traditional shortening. There is no need to flour the pan after greasing.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, spices, salt, baking soda, and baking powder. Set aside. In a separate bowl, beat together the butter and sugar. Add the eggs one at a time, mixing in well after each addition. Scrape the bowl frequently to ensure all ingredients are incorporated. On low setting, mix in the molasses.

With the mixer on the low setting, blend in the flour mixture in three additions alternating with the water. Mix until just incorporated and smooth.

Pour the batter into the prepared pan and smooth out the top. Bake for 50-60 minutes, until the cake tester inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean. Remove from the oven and let it cool in the pan for 10 minutes, then turn out onto a cooling rack set over a cookie sheet. If using the rum glaze, it can be applied while the cake is still warm. If using the cream cheese glaze, the cake must be room temperature before glazing.

Rum Glaze (optional)
Heat the ingredients, except for the optional butter rum flavoring, over low heat stirring regularly until the sugar is dissolved. Using a long pick, poke small holes into the top and sides of the cake. Stir in the butter rum flavoring. Brush the glaze onto the cake while it is warm.

Cream Cheese Glaze (optional)
Combine cream cheese, powdered sugar, butter, and vanilla in medium bowl. Using electric mixer, beat until smooth. Slowly add milk or cream until the desired glaze consistency forms. Pour the glaze on the top of the cake.

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