May is a busy time for me with birthdays and baking. I made this cake last week. We visited friends at their cabin and I was asked to bring this cake along. Honestly, at first I thought we should be eating rhubarb. It is definitely rhubarb season! Spice cakes, for me anyway, conjure up thoughts of fall and cooler temps. This however, was the perfect cake for our weekend get away and easily one of my favorite cakes ever. A very bold statement for me to make; I have eaten and baked a lot of cakes in my 62 year life. I beg of you... make this cake! And don't wait until fall.
The only change I made to this recipe was to add more powdered (confectioners') sugar to the frosting. The 3/4 cup in the original recipe didn't make it thick and fluffy enough for me.
• 2 1/4 cups unbleached flour
• 1 teaspoon baking powder
• 1 teaspoon baking soda
• 1/2 teaspoon salt
• 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
• 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
• 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
• 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
• 1 stick(1/2 cup) unsalted butter, softened
• 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
• 1 cup white granulated sugar
• 2 eggs
• 1 teaspoon vanilla
• 1 1/4 cups buttermilk
• Espresso-Cardamon Frosting (recipe follows)
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour 2 (8-inch) or 1 (13x9-inch) baking pans.
2. Sift flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and spices together; set aside.
3. In a large bowl, cream butter, brown sugar and white granulated sugar together, then add eggs one at a time then vanilla, mixing until light and fluffy (about 5 minutes), scraping the sides of the bowl while mixing.
4. Beat in dry ingredients alternating with the buttermilk, beginning and ending with the flour mixture. Beat until just smooth, about a minute. Pour into prepared pans.
5. Bake in a preheated 350 degree F oven for about 30-35 minutes for layers, 40-45 minutes for the oblong cake, or until cake tests for doneness. Remove from oven and cool on racks about 10 minutes, then remove from pans (13x9-inch cake may be left in the pan) and finish cooling on racks.
• 1/4 cup milk
• 1 tablespoon espresso powder
• 1 teaspoon ground cardamom
• 1 teaspoon vanilla
• 2 sticks (1 cup) butter, softened
• 3/4 cup confectioners' sugar, plus additional to make thicker and fluffier. I used at least 1 cup -- possibly more.
1. Heat the milk and dissolve the espresso powder in it, then allow it to cool.
2. Beat together the remaining ingredients for the icing together, then add the coffee/milk mixture and continue beating until fluffy.
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