Layers of spiced maple cake with hints of citrus, topped with a creamy goat cheese frosting and candied orange slices.
You all know my struggle with making pretty cakes is real. I determined to get better at them in 2016, therefor you may or may not get hit with layer cake after layer cake recipe as I practice my frosting skills. The recipes are always solid and trust worthy..... but I can't promise the cake will be pretty.
Luckily for those who are like me, and end up covered in sticky frosting, and have piping bags stuck to their hands.... a new naked cake trend has taken over the Internet. Simple rustic layer cakes with minimal frosting. It might be the best thing to happen to cake in my opinion.
Maple Gingerbread Cake with Whipped Chèvre Frosting
For the cake
4 1/2 cups of all-purpose flour
2 tbs ground ginger
1 tbs ground cinnamon
1 tbs baking soda
1 tsp salt
11/2 cups browned butter *notes at the bottom of recipe*
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup dark brown sugar
4 large eggs
1 1/4 cups maple syrup
1/2 cup molasses
2 tbs orange zest
1 1/2 cups buttermilk
For the frosting:
1 cup granulated sugar
4 oz chevre, room temperature
4 oz cream cheese, room temperature
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/4 cups heavy whipping cream
pinch of salt
For the filling:
3/4 cup of quality orange marmalade
For the Candied Oranges:
1 large seedless orange
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup water
1 cinnamon stick
Pre heat oven to 350 degrees.
Spray 3, 8 inch cake pans with non stick baking spray. Set aside.
In a mixing bowl, sift together flour, ginger, cinnamon baking soda and salt. Set aside.
In a a separate mixing bowl, add brown butter, oil, sugar, brown sugar, eggs, maple syrup, molasses, orange zest, and buttermilk. Mix until everything is incorporated.
Combine wet ingredients with your dry. Mix until everything is combined.
Pour batter equally into cake pans. Bake for about 35 minutes, or until a toothpick is inserted and comes out clean.
Allow cakes to cool to room temperature.
Meanwhile prepare you candied orange slices.
Slice orange into thin slices, about 1/8 of an inch thick. A mandolin helps do this evenly, however a sharp knife can be used. I find that a juicy orange is best to place in the freezer to chill before slicing. So you get clean slices.
In a large fry pan, place sugar and water over medium low heat, once the sugar has dissolved and it has come to a low boil, add in your cinnamon stick and orange slices. Be sure not to over crowd the slices.
Reduce heat to low, and allow the oranges to simmer until they are translucent and shiny. Be sure to turn the slices occasionally so they are evenly coated in the syrup. It took mine about 40 minutes.
Remove oranges from the pan and place them on to sugared wax paper (a piece of wax paper with a thin layer of granulated sugar spread over it). Let the oranges cool to room temperature.
Once the cakes have cooled, trim the tops to even them out and make them flat. Also take one cake layer and trim the sides by about 1-2 centimeters. This will be your middle layer, you want it to be smaller than the other two layers, to help create the illusion of a deep frosting layer in the center.
To prepare your frosting, in the bowl of your electric mixer, whip heavy cream and salt together until stiff peaks form. Remove from bowl and set aside.
Now whip your sugar, chèvre, cream cheese and vanilla extract together until light and fluffy.
Carefully fold in your whipped cream, and then turn mixer to high whipping the two together. It should be very light and fluffy.
To assemble cakes:
Heat orange marmalade up in the microwave for about 30 seconds, or until it becomes pourable.
Brush the tops of each cake layer evenly with the marmalade. After the marmalade has cooled, spread a very thin layer of frosting on the tops of each cake. Layer the cakes stacking the trimmed cake layer in the center.
Spread the rest of the frosting on the cake heavily, making sure to fill in the size gap of the center layer.
Take a bench knife or frosting spatula, and lightly go around the edges, and scrape off any extra frosting. Just like you would do if you were crumb Coating.
Once the cake has an even layer of frosting, the cake should be exposed in spots and look rather rustic. Arrange the cooled orange slices over the top and sides in any manor you choose.
Place in the refrigerator until you are ready to serve!