Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Give the Cadbury Bunny a Swift Kick in the Bundt

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The local Walgreens has a display of Easter bunnies at the front entrance. It’s still February. Easter is so far off I had to Google when it fell this year, “What day is Easter 2010.” The magic that is the Google search engine gave me over 100 results telling me April 4th, along with the additional factoid that the Greek Orthodox church would be celebrating the same day. I found this strangely comforting.

I’m not ready to wrap my head around what I’m baking for Easter. I applaud the Cadbury bunny for her (his?) triumph of planning, getting all those chocolate eggs laid months before their due date. But I can’t rouse myself to think about pound cakes baked in the shape of lambs. A cake that always makes me sad, by the way. Who finds joy in slicing open a frosted Bambi?

Right now, when it’s still snowing and any promise of spring is buried 10-feet under a frost heave, I’d rather contemplate a beer and not a bunny. A stout, to be exact. And that brings to mind a holiday that IS right around the corner. St. Patricks Day. So I give to you a cake that fits the current season. Make yourself this delicious Guinness bundt and go tell the Cadbury bunny to take a chill pill.

GUINNESS BUNDT

INGREDIENTS

1 can Guinness Stout

½ cup pomegranate molasses (or regular molasses)

½ cup brown sugar

2 teaspoons baking soda

3 eggs

1 cup muscovado sugar

2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature

2 cups all purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 tablespoon ginger

1 tablespoon cinnamon

1 teaspoon cloves

½ teaspoon nutmeg

½ teaspoon white pepper

1 teaspoon salt

1 cup cubed candied ginger (optional)

Confectioners sugar for dusting

PROCEDURE

Preheat oven to 350°

In a large saucepan, combine molasses, brown sugar, Guinness and baking soda and simmer over medium heat until the brown sugar has melted. The mixture will bubble due to the baking soda, so make sure your pot is large enough! Set aside.

In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder and all spices and salt. Set aside.

In a standmixer with paddle attachment, cream muscovado sugar and butter until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating between additions and scraping down the bowl.

Add flour and Guinness mixture, alternate between the two, adding a quarter of each mixture with each incorporation.

Stir in candied ginger, if using, and pour the batter into a non-stick bundt mold that’s been liberally sprayed with non-stick spray. I’ll say it again, non-stick molds stick. Be ever vigilant!

Bake at 350° for about an hour. When the cake is cool, dust with confectioners and enjoy with a steaming cup of coffee liberally doused with whiskey. With all this snow, goodness knows you need it.

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