We could talk crumb texture, crust, the cool dessert knife I picked up on clearance reminding us all that life is uncertain, so we really should eat dessert first.
But, we’re gonna talk about two issues I had with the making of this quite nice cake (based on, apparently, a recipe by Paula Peck) : the vanilla and the ground ginger
I looked – several times – and could not find where in the instructions to add the vanilla and the ground ginger, so, in the heat of the soaking and whipping and folding and all, I added the vanilla to the egg whites where I list it, and totally forgot to add the ground ginger!
I’m thinkin’ the ground ginger should be added in the beginning, with the butter and sugar, so, barring any instructions to the contrary, that’s where I’m adding it.
•6 eggs, separated
•1 cup sugar
•1 cup unsalted butter, softened
•2 cups flour
•1/8 tsp salt
•1 tsp vanilla
•1/2 cup chopped crystallized ginger
•1/4 cup rum or Amaretto
•1 tsp ground ginger
Heat the oven to 350º.
Combine 1 tablespoon each of solid shortening, canola oil, and flour in a small bowl and brush evenly over the insides of a bundt or tube pan – I was using my swirl pan for this cake.
Drain, discarding any leftover liquid, and toss with one cup of the flour so you have a bowl of well coated lumps – like this:
Cream the softened butter together with 1/4 cup of the sugar and the ground ginger until light and fluffy.
Add the egg yolks one at a time, beating well after each addition.
Add the salt to the egg whites in a large mixing bowl and beat until soft peaks form.
With the mixer running, add the vanilla, and then the remaining sugar – one tablespoon at a time – then continue beating for five to ten minutes, or until the egg whites are really, really firm.
Fold a quarter of the whipped egg whites into the whipped butter-sugar-yolk mixture, and then fold that whole bit plus the floured crystallized ginger back into the bowl with the remaining whipped whites. Don’t fret over any white splotches of unincorporated egg white – do not over mix, just fold and think good, cake-y thoughts.
I told you this was a kindofa fussy cake to make – still, I think it’s worth it…
Remove from the oven and cool on a rack for ten minutes, then turn over and pop the cake out of the pan and allow to cool the rest of the way on the rack.
Nice job, hey?
While fine for dessert, this is not a really sweet cake, perhaps more suitable for morning coffee and mebbe with a dab o’ jam or brandied cherries drizzled over?
I dunno, I’ve been enjoying a slice all week just by itself whenever I felt the urge for a treat; try a bit and see if you don’t agree.