The Whoopie Claus

I'm not entirely comfortable with baking Santa.  I'm even less comfortable with the thought of eating poor St. Nick.  But I've had this mold for years.  It was a gift and I had gingerbread cake batter ready and waiting for some use.   So here he sits, warm from the oven and smelling of gingerbread.

I've hedged my bets, knowing I'd be hard pressed not to break off a piece of his face and chow down immediately, only to feel a guilt last felt on the Donner Pass (if only a wee bit tastier guilt).  So I made some whoopie pies with my remaining batter.  I filled them with vanilla bean cream cheese icing just to make them that much more irresistible.  I'll save the cake for some kids who'll feel far less remorse at cannibalizing the jolly gingerbread man.

Gingerbread Cake

1 stick butter
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 cup molasses
1/4 cup honey
2 eggs
2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 tablespoon ginger
1 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon white pepper
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup of English breakfast tea, cooled to room temperature

-Cream together the butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy. Slowly add molasses and honey and beat until well incorporated.
-Add eggs, one at a time and then slowly pour in the tea and vanilla.
-Whisk together the dry ingredients and slowly add, being careful not to over work the batter.

-I used about 3/4 of the batter for the Santa mold.  I baked him at 350º for about and hour and 15 minutes.  These old molds have a front and back, so you fill the batter with Santa face down and then put his back on and hope that there's enough batter to fill up out his jeans.  For the whoopies, I used a large cookie scoop and scooped the batter directly onto a sheet pan lined with parchment paper.  I baked these for 20 minutes at 350º.  With 1/4 of the batter left, I got a total of 3 whoopies.  If I'd just gone ahead and gone all whoopie, I'm guessing I'd have ended up with 12 total.

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