Easter Recipes from Razzle Dazzle Recipes
Ginger Crunch Cake with Strawberry Sauce
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Ginger Crunch Cake with Strawberry Sauce

Crunch Topping
1 cup pecans, toasted and chopped fine
1/2 cup gingersnap cookie crumbs (from about eight 2-inch gingersnaps)
1/2 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
1/2 stick (1/4 cup) unsalted butter, melted

Ginger Cake
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon ground ginger
3/4 teaspoon cinnamon
3/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup unsulfured molasses
2/3 cup buttermilk
1/3 cup granulated sugar
3/4 stick (6 tablespoons) unsalted butter, softened
1 large egg, beaten lightly

3 cups well-chilled heavy cream
1 teaspoon vanilla
4 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 pint strawberries
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

Garnish: strawberries, with leaves and blossoms if desired (not recommended for eating)

Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease three 8- by 2-inch cake pans.

For crunch topping:
In a small bowl combine crunch topping ingredients, stirring until combined. Divide topping among pans and press evenly onto bottom.
For ginger cake:

In a large bowl whisk together flour, baking soda, ginger, cinnamon, and salt. Add remaining ginger cake ingredients and with an electric mixer beat on high speed 2 minutes. Carefully spread batter over crunch topping in pans and bake in upper and lower thirds of oven, switching position of pans in oven halfway through baking, 20 minutes, or until a tester inserted in center of each layer comes out clean.

Immediately invert cake layers onto racks lined with wax paper and cool completely. Cake layers may be made 2 weeks ahead and frozen, wrapped separately in plastic wrap. Thaw layers in refrigerator before proceeding with recipe.

In a chilled bowl with chilled beaters of an electric mixer beat 2 cups cream with vanilla and 2 tablespoons granulated sugar until it just holds stiff peaks.

Cake Assembly:
Arrange 1 cake layer, crunch side up, on a cake plate and spread with a heaping cup whipped cream. Repeat with another cake layer and another heaping cup whipped cream and top with third cake layer, crunch side up. Leaving top plain, spread remaining whipped cream on side of cake to coat (a final coating will be added later). Chill cake, covered loosely with plastic wrap, at least 4 hours (to facilitate slicing) and up to 24.

Hull strawberries and slice half of them. In a bowl with a potato masher mash sliced berries with lemon juice and remaining 2 tablespoons granulated sugar. In a food processor purée remaining berries and strain through a fine sieve into bowl with mashed berry mixture. Sauce may be made 1 day ahead and chilled, covered.

In a chilled bowl with chilled beaters of an electric mixer, beat remaining cup cream until it just holds stiff peaks and spread decoratively on side of cake. Arrange some whole strawberries on top of cake and garnish plate with additional whole strawberries.

Serve cake with strawberry sauce.

Makes 1 Cake.

April 1995


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