Can­died Gin­Ger Pound Cake Balls

Austin American-Statesman - - FOOD MATTERS -

For cake: 1 cup but­ter plus 1/2 cup for

frost­ing, soft­ened 1 1/2 cups sugar

3 large eggs 1/2cup­milk 1/2 tsp.al­mond ex­tract 1/2 tsp.vanilla ex­tract 2 cups all-pur­pose flour For frost­ing: Dash salt 16 oz. pow­dered sugar 3 to 4 tbsp. milk 1/2tbsp.vanilla ex­tract

For cake balls: 2/3cup finely chopped crys­tal­lized gin­ger, plus 2 tbsp. for gar­nish 4 (4-oz.) 60 per­cent ca­cao bit­ter­sweet choco­late bak­ing bars, chopped 2 (4-oz.) semisweet choco­late bak­ing bars, chopped

Pre­heat oven to 300 de­grees. Lightly grease and flour a 9-inch round cake pan.

Beat but­ter at medium speed with a mixer un­til creamy. Grad­u­ally add sugar, then beat on medium speed 3 to 5 min­utes, or un­til light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beat­ing just un­til yel­low dis­ap­pears. In a small bowl, com­bine milk and ex­tracts, then add flour to but­ter mix­ture al­ter­nately with milk mix­ture, be­gin­ning and end­ing with flour. Beat at low speed just un­til blended af­ter each ad­di­tion. Bake for 50 to 60 min­utes or un­til a wooden pick in­serted in cen­ter comes out clean. Cool in pan on a wire rack 10 min­utes. Re­move from pan to wire rack; cool com­pletely (about 1 hour).

While the cake is bak­ing, make the vanilla but­ter­cream frost­ing. Beat 1/2 cup but­ter and salt at medium speed with an elec­tric mixer 1 to 2 min­utes or un­til creamy. Grad­u­ally add pow­dered sugar al­ter­nately with 3 Tbsp. milk, beat­ing at low speed un­til blended and smooth af­ter each ad­di­tion. Stir in vanilla. If frost­ing is too thick, beat in re­main­ing 1 Tbsp. milk, 1 tsp. at a time.

To make the cake balls, crum­ble the room tem­per­a­ture cake in a large bowl and mix in 1 cup frost­ing and 2/3 cup crys­tal­lized gin­ger un­til it holds its shape in a ball. (You can add more frost­ing if it doesn’t hold to­gether.)

Shape into 1-inch rounds, and place on wax pa­per. Melt bit­ter­sweet choco­late and semisweet choco­late in a dou­ble boiler over sim­mer­ing water. (If you don’t have a dou­ble boiler, you can ei­ther melt the choco­lates in the mi­crowave or by plac­ing a glass bowl on top of a pot of sim­mer­ing water.) Us­ing a spoon, dip cake balls one at a time in melted choco­late to coat and then place on a wax pa­per-lined bak­ing sheet. Sprin­kle im­me­di­ately with finely chopped crys­tal­lized gin­ger. The choco­late will set as the cake balls sit out. Once the choco­late has hard­ened, you can wrap them for gift­ing. Makes 6 dozen truf­fles. — Adapted from South­ern Liv­ing, De­cem­ber 2012

Can­died gin­ger also goes into th­ese cake balls. THaO NGUyeN / ameR­I­caN-STaTeS­maN

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