This is my favorite cake. I can't help it. The way it starts off, with the figs soaking in a brew of hot coffee and rum is absurd in its evil glory. And when it bakes, a blast of luscious aroma infuses everything and leads to the compulsion to check the oven every 2 minutes, "is it done yet? is it done yet? is it done yet?"
And once it's out of the oven, the flavor doesn't disappoint and paired with maple cream cheese frosting, this puppy is a damn fine beginning, middle or end to your day.
3 cups brown sugar
2 sticks (8 ounces) unsalted butter
7 eggs (room temperature)
1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
1 1/2 cups chopped dried fig
3/4 cup hot coffee
1/4 cup cap't morgan's spiced rum
1/2 cup heavy cream
3 cups all purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
-Chop the figs and soak in the hot coffee and rum
|I use a measuring cup with a spout to easily pour off the coffee/rum mixture when the times comes.|
-Cream together the sugar and the butter until light and fluffy.
-Add eggs, one at a time and then add vanilla. Whisk until well incorporated.
-Drain the coffee/rum liquids from the figs but keep the liquid.
-Combine the coffee/rum reserved liquid with the heavy cream and stir to combine.
-Whisk together the flour, salt and baking powder
-Add the flour and the coffee/cream liquids slowly, alternating between the two until they are just incorporated.
-Fold in the figs and pour the batter into a half sheet pan that's lined with parchment and has been sprayed with non-stick spray.
-Bake at 350º until golden brown, about 30 minutes. The cake should spring back when you poke it.
For the frosting
-Follow the directions for the cream cheese frosting but substitute maple sugar for the confectioner's sugar.
|Cut the rings using a guide, if you don't have the appropriate sized cake rings.|
-Using a small offset spatula, roughly frost the sides of the cakes with frosting to simulate bark. Refrigerate to set.
-While the cakes are setting, melt 1 cup of chopped chocolate and transfer to a pastry bag fit with a small open tip. Pipe tree rings on the top of each cake.
-Stack in a zig zag configuration. Impale the cakes with a wooden skewer if you're afraid that the cakes are unstable.