Candied GinGer Pound Cake Balls
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