Frosting for gingerbread cake

prairie_loveDecember 15, 2008

Hi all, I'm looking for opinions on the right frosting. I made the gingerbread from the Cook's Illustrate book (New Best Recipes). I've made this before and it's wonderful. It's more like a cake than a gingerbread cookie, it has three kinds of ginger in it - ground, fresh, and crystallized (well, actually it only calls for two, I use three), and molasses, and spices (cinnamon, allspice, cloves, nutmeg). It's yummy.

Anyway, the last (and only) time I made it, I used a pear sauce with it. The pear sauce just didn't have enough oomph to stand up to the ginger. So I thought I would frost it this time. I'm thinking a cream cheese frosting, maybe with orange or lemon in it. Maybe even a little more crystallized ginger, but maybe that would be overkill. What do you all think?

Thanks,

Ann

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colleenoz

My mother used to make a citrus whipped cream to go with gingerbread cake.
Beat 1 egg with 1/2 cup sugar, 1 teaspoon each of grated orange peel and lemon peel and 2 tablespoons lemon juice. Cook and stir over low heat until thick (about 5 minutes).
[Note: I guess these days you could zap it in 15 second bursts and check it.]
Fold in 1 cup whipping cream, whipped.

    Bookmark   December 15, 2008 at 9:15PM
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prairie_love

You know what? I really like the whipped cream idea. It would be lighter than the cream cheese frosting. Unfortunately I didn't have whipped cream and did have cream cheese and needed to finish up this morning as its for a potluck at work today. So I did the cream cheese. But I used your suggestion of both orange and lemon. We'll see how it goes. I'll probably make it again for New Year's so I'll try the whipped cream then. Thanks for the recipe!

Ann

    Bookmark   December 16, 2008 at 10:55AM
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ann_t

I like to serve Gingerbread cake warm with either a lemon sauce or caramel sauce.

If you have any gingerbread leftover it makes a wonderful bread pudding, topped with caramel sauce.

Home Cookin Chapter: Recipes From Thibeault's Table

Warm Lemon Sauce
=================================

Lemon Sauce

1/4 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice
1 teaspoon grated lemon peel
1/2 cup sugar
1 Tablespoon cornstarch
2/3 cup water
1 Tablespoon butter

Mix sugar and cornstarch until blended. Add lemon juice, lemon peel,
water and 1 tablespoon butter. Heat to boiling over medium to high
heat, boil 1 minute. Makes 1 1/4 cups.

Serve cake with warm sauce.

    Bookmark   December 16, 2008 at 11:04AM
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cooperbailey

I love gingerbread with a small dollop of softened creamcheese and lemon sauce. Anns recipe sounds similar to my Grandmother's. The combination turns it into something special.

    Bookmark   December 16, 2008 at 2:34PM
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lindac

I vote for either cream cheese frosting with lots of lemon zest...or split the cake, spread lemon curd in the middle and top with whipped cream...
I guess what I am saying is to split the layer, fill with lemon curd, then cut a wedge and top with a dollop of whipped cream on the plate....not to frost the whole cake.
Maybe I should make that for Christmas?
Recipe please??
Linda C

    Bookmark   December 16, 2008 at 2:43PM
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prairie_love

Lemon wins! You all suggest lemon, with some variations. The frosting I made was actually quite good. Linda C, what a great idea!

I will post the recipe tonight when I get home. I've never been asked for a recipe here on the cooking forum, I feel special :) (course, it isn't *my* recipe, so I guess I shouldn't feel too special)

Ann

    Bookmark   December 16, 2008 at 3:29PM
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prairie_love

GINGERBREAD

2 1/4 cups sifted (9 ounces) unbleached all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting the pan
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons ground ginger**
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
1 teaspoon Dutch-processed cocoa
8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted and cooled to room temperature
3/4 cup mild or light molasses
3/4 cup (5 1/4 ounces) sugar
1/2 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup milk
1 large egg

**For a stronger ginger flavor, replace the ground ginger with 3 tablespoons grated fresh ginger and 3 tablespoons minced crystallized ginger. (I used 3 T fresh, 3 T crystallized, and 1 t ground)

1. Adjust an oven rack to the middle position and heat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease the bottom and sides of an 11 by 7-inch baking dish; dust with flour, tapping out the excess.

2. Whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, ginger, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, allspice, and cocoa in a medium bowl.

3. Beat the butter, molasses, sugar, buttermilk, milk, and egg in a large bowl with an electric mixer on low speed. Add the dry ingredients and beat on medium speed until the batter is smooth and thick, about 1 minute, scraping down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula as needed. Do not overmix. Scrape the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the surface.

4. Bake until the top springs back when lightly touched and the edges have pulled away from the pan sides, about 40 minutes. Set the pan on a wire rack and cool for at least 10 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Variation: Fold 3/4 cup raisins, dried cranberries, or chopped prunes into the finished batter (I have not tried this).

From: The New Best Recipe, Cook's Illustrated

    Bookmark   December 16, 2008 at 8:46PM
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