Day #8 of Holiday Appetizers: Molasses Gingerbread with Mascarpone Cream & Orange Confit

Gingerbread. It's polarizing. Some people love it, some people hate it. I happen to fall in the first camp, where the smell of gingerbread reminds me of baking in my grandma's kitchen as a child. For a recent cocktail party, I decided to go for an adult version of the classic holiday bread, making a gingerbread cake topped with mascarpone cream and a slice of orange confit (it's basically candied orange peel). While the cake was baking our house smelled like Christmas, a little spicy from cinnamon and ginger and a little sweet from the rich aroma of molasses. Heaven, if you ask me. 

Molasses Gingerbread Bites with Mascarpone Cream and Orange Confit

I made the cake one day ahead and kept it wrapped in an airtight container, then simply sliced it into bite-sized pieces, piped on the whipped topping an added a mini slice of orange confit. You could certainly do without the cream and the orange, instead topping it with a glaze or eating it warm with some cinnamon ice cream. Either way, it's delicious. I hope you enjoy it as much as we did!

Molasses Gingerbread Cake with Mascarpone Cream
Recipe from Food & Wine Magazine

  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 3/4 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 3/4 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons dark brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons molasses
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons honey
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
  • 3/4 cup boiling water
  • 1 orange, zest peeled with a vegetable peeler and sliced lengthwise into 1/8-inch strips
  • 4 cups water
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 cup Mascarpone, at room temperature
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream
  • 3/4 teaspoon finely grated orange zest
  • 2 tablespoons confectioners' sugar
  • Pinch of salt
Preheat the oven to 350°. Spray a 9-inch square baking pan with vegetable cooking spray. In a large bowl, combine the flour with the ground ginger, cinnamon, baking soda and salt. In a medium bowl, whisk the canola oil with the brown sugar, molasses, honey, eggs and lemon zest until smooth. Whisk the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients until combined. Whisk in the boiling water. Scrape the batter into the prepared pan and bake for about 1 hour and 10 minutes, until a cake tester inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean. Set the pan on a rack and let the cake cool completely, about 2 hours.

Combine dry ingredients

Whisk wet ingredients until combined

Bake gingerbread batter until golden brown and light and fluffy

Cut cooled gingerbread into bite-sized pieces

In a medium saucepan, combine the strips of orange zest with the water and sugar. Bring to a boil and cook over high heat until syrupy and the orange zest is soft, about 30 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the orange confit to a plate; discard the syrup.

To make Orange Confit: Boil orange peel, sugar and water for 30 minutes or until tender and syrupy

In a large bowl, using an electric mixer at medium speed, beat the mascarpone with the cream, orange zest, confectioners' sugar and salt until soft peaks form. Cut the molasses-gingerbread cake into squares and transfer to plates. Dollop the mascarpone cream on top, garnish with the orange confit and serve.

Top with small dollop or piping of Mascarpone cream

Add small slice of Orange Confit to whipped cream. 

Serve and enjoy!
MAKE AHEAD: The cake can be wrapped in plastic and kept at room temperature for up to 2 days. The orange confit can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days.

1 comment:

  1. I always appreciate how you provide photos of the process. Otherwise, I end up asking myself "is this what it's supposed to look like at this point?"


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