Gingerbread Sheet Cake with Maple Cream Cheese Frosting


 
Gingerbread Sheet Cake with Maple Cream Cheese Frosting - a warming spiced cake, topped with a silky, maple, ream cheese frosting. A super simple yet delicious cake, perfect for feeding a crowd or for a quick holiday pick me up.
Gingerbread Sheet Cake with Maple Cream Cheese Frosting - a warming spiced cake, topped with a silky, maple, ream cheese frosting. A super simple yet delicious cake, perfect for feeding a crowd or for a quick holiday pick me up.
Gingerbread Sheet Cake with Maple Cream Cheese Frosting - a warming spiced cake, topped with a silky, maple, ream cheese frosting. A super simple yet delicious cake, perfect for feeding a crowd or for a quick holiday pick me up.
Gingerbread Sheet Cake with Maple Cream Cheese Frosting - a warming spiced cake, topped with a silky, maple, ream cheese frosting. A super simple yet delicious cake, perfect for feeding a crowd or for a quick holiday pick me up.
Gingerbread Sheet Cake with Maple Cream Cheese Frosting - a warming spiced cake, topped with a silky, maple, ream cheese frosting. A super simple yet delicious cake, perfect for feeding a crowd or for a quick holiday pick me up.
Gingerbread Sheet Cake with Maple Cream Cheese Frosting - a warming spiced cake, topped with a silky, maple, ream cheese frosting. A super simple yet delicious cake, perfect for feeding a crowd or for a quick holiday pick me up.
Gingerbread Sheet Cake with Maple Cream Cheese Frosting - a warming spiced cake, topped with a silky, maple, ream cheese frosting. A super simple yet delicious cake, perfect for feeding a crowd or for a quick holiday pick me up.

Merry belated Christmas! I hope you all celebrated (if you do), with those you love, surrounded by loads of food. We had a super chill Christmas with Jill and her family, which was just what we needed. I always struggle a little with homesickness, especially around the holidays, so it’s always so nice to have people who are like family to spend it with.

I had planned to take between Christmas and New Year off, kicking off again once we are in 2019, but I remembered this morning that I was meant to share this recipe for Gingerbread Sheet Cake with Maple Cream Cheese Frosting before Christmas, and life got in the way, so here we are now!

I know people think of Gingerbread as a holiday recipe, but as far as I am concerned, it should be a year round flavour. The recipe for the Gingerbread sheet cake comes from my good friend Brooke Bell’s book, “Cake: Layered, Frosted, Sliced and Shared”. The book is filled with cakes for every occasion, from a jazzed up box mix to more complex layer cakes. The recipe for this Gingerbread sheet cake jumped out at me - it is super simple to make, but still incredibly delicious, filled with warming spices, keeps well, and perfect for feeding a crowd. It would be perfect just with a little dust of powdered sugar, but I had some cream cheese that needed using up, so made a quick maple cream cheese frosting, which fancied it up just a tiny bit - definitely not totally necessary, but very, very delicious. This cake is perfect to help us bridge the weird gap between Christmas and New Years.

A few wee tips:

  • This cake is amazing just with a quick dusting of powdered sugar, so if you aren’t in the mood for frosting, feel free to skip it.

  • This cake keeps beautifully in an airtight container - perfect for if you have people drop by.

  • I love sheet cakes because they transport super well - provided you have a parchment paper sling in the baking pan, you can frost it right in the pan and serve from there.

  • You can either make this in a bowl with a whisk or electric hand mixer, or your stand mixer - I did it in my stand mixer because I am lazy, and it worked just as well!

 

 

Gingerbread Sheet Cake with Maple Cream Cheese Frosting

- Makes one 9” x 13” cake - serves 12-16 -

Cake recipe reprinted with permission from “Cake: Layered, Frosted, Sliced and Shared”.

Gingerbread Sheet Cake
320g (2 1/4 cups) All-Purpose Flour
200g (1 cup) Granulated Sugar
1 Tbsp ground ginger
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp ground allspice
300g (1 1/4 cups) whole milk
170g (1/2 cup) unsulphured molasses
90g (6 Tbsp) Canola oil
2 large eggs

Maple Cream Cheese Frosting
170g unsalted butter, at room temperature
335g cream cheese, cold from the fridge
670g icing sugar, sifted
1/2 tsp vanilla bean paste
1/4 tsp salt
80g maple syrup

 

- PROCESS -

GINGERBREAD SHEET CAKE

Preheat the oven to 350°f / 180°c. Spray a 9” x 13” baking dish with baking spray, or grease with butter. Line with a parchment paper sling.

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, or a large bowl, whisk together flour, granulated sugar, ginger, baking soda, cinnamon, salt, nutmeg, and allspice. Make a well in the center of the flour mixture; add milk, molasses, oil, and eggs. Beat with a mixer at low speed until combined, about 1 minutes. Pour batter into prepared pan. Tap pan on counter twice to release air bubbles.

Bake until a wooden pick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 28 minutes. Let cool completely in pan. Dust with icing sugar, or frost with maple cream cheese frosting (recipe follows)

MAPLE CREAM CHEESE FROSTING

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or in a large bowl, cream together the butter and cream cheese on high until pale and fluffy, 3-4 minutes. Add icing sugar, vanilla bean paste and salt, and mix on low to combine. Turn the mixer to high and beat for another 3-4 minutes, or until light and fluffy. Add maple syrup, and beat until well combined.

Scrape the frosting onto the cake, and spread with an offset spatula. Sprinkle with cinnamon if desired.

Store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge.

Gingerbread Sheet Cake with Maple Cream Cheese Frosting - a warming spiced cake, topped with a silky, maple, ream cheese frosting. A super simple yet delicious cake, perfect for feeding a crowd or for a quick holiday pick me up.

“Cake: Layered, Frosted, Sliced and Shared” was written by Brooke Bell, and is Copyright 2018 83 Press.

Chocolate Snack Cake with Chocolate Buttercream


 
Chocolate Snack Cake with Chocolate Buttercream - the perfect cake recipe to have in your back pocket. Tender chocolate cake topped with fluffy chocolate buttercream #chocolatecake #snackcake
Chocolate Snack Cake with Chocolate Buttercream - the perfect cake recipe to have in your back pocket. Tender chocolate cake topped with fluffy chocolate buttercream #chocolatecake #snackcake
Chocolate Snack Cake with Chocolate Buttercream - the perfect cake recipe to have in your back pocket. Tender chocolate cake topped with fluffy chocolate buttercream #chocolatecake #snackcake
Chocolate Snack Cake with Chocolate Buttercream - the perfect cake recipe to have in your back pocket. Tender chocolate cake topped with fluffy chocolate buttercream #chocolatecake #snackcake
Chocolate Snack Cake with Chocolate Buttercream - the perfect cake recipe to have in your back pocket. Tender chocolate cake topped with fluffy chocolate buttercream #chocolatecake #snackcake
Chocolate Snack Cake with Chocolate Buttercream - the perfect cake recipe to have in your back pocket. Tender chocolate cake topped with fluffy chocolate buttercream #chocolatecake #snackcake
Chocolate Snack Cake with Chocolate Buttercream - the perfect cake recipe to have in your back pocket. Tender chocolate cake topped with fluffy chocolate buttercream #chocolatecake #snackcake
Chocolate Snack Cake with Chocolate Buttercream - the perfect cake recipe to have in your back pocket. Tender chocolate cake topped with fluffy chocolate buttercream #chocolatecake #snackcake

Damn, it's been a week. We have been crazy busy working on some new things for the studio - this week we shot our new chair AND launched it all in the same week. Oye. The shoot on Tuesday was so, so much fun - we had a professional photographer in, but I decided it would be fun to see what I could shoot as well, and was surprisingly impressed with what I ended up with! I was super nervous going into it because it wasn't food and there was a model involved, but we made a super detailed mood board, and it was so nice to have something to go off - I think I need to do that more! You can see it all here - have a peep at the chair too. I'm obsessed with it, and can't wait to have a house where we can actually fit one! Lol. 

I made this a few weeks ago and haven't gotten around to sharing it - it is the chocolate cake from my friend Melissa's new Book, The Minimalist Kitchen. The book, like Melissa's blog, is amazingly beautiful, and between recipes, is also filled with tips on how to have a minimalist kitchen. There are all sorts of little tips and tricks in there - I need to take notes, because I am a chronic purchaser of one-use pans and weird sized packets of specialty ingredients, which do not mix well with small shoebox kitchens. 

This cake is super simple but also amazingly delicious - a single layer of cake, loaded up with a dreamy chocolate buttercream. As someone who over commits to making cakes on the regular, usually going with multi-layered, multi-component towers, making something which didn't involve stacking or crumb coating was super fun, and just as yum as a multi layer extravaganza! Melissa makes hers into a round cake, but I chose to make a square, because i've been cracking up over the name "snack cake" ever since I realised it was an actual thing and not a joke name Americans use, so I was desperate to make my own, just so I could call it a snack cake! 

The cake comes together super quickly, and has a very tender crumb. It is then loaded up with a fluffy chocolate buttercream, which reminds me so much of the cakes we used to have for our birthdays as kids, and is one of Richard's fave things ever. The cake got destroyed in about 10 minutes flat when I took it to the studio, and has firmly cemented it's place in my list of back pocket recipes. It would be perfect to make for a bbq, or a small birthday - you can decorate it however you like, and it will always be a crowd pleaser. 

Congrats Melissa, the book is beautiful! 

A few wee tips:

  • Melissa recommends making this in an 8 inch round tin, but I only wanted to frost the top, so I popped it in an 8 inch square and added all the frosting on the top rather than smoothing it down.

  • This would make a perfect layer cake - just double the recipe and bake in two 8 inch tins

  • Melissa adds pumpkin seeds, cacao nibs and shredded coconut on the edges, but I couldn't help but add sprinkles.

  • If you're used to making big cakes like I am this will seem like not very much mixture - at least it did to me. Don't worry - it makes the perfect amount!

  • A quick note: I have made this into a layer cake and it worked perfectly! I doubled the cake recipe, and baked it in 3 x 6" tins. You can either double or triple the buttercream recipe if you're making a layer cake.

 

 

Chocolate Snack Cake with Chocolate Buttercream 

- Makes one 8 inch cake -

Cake Batter
Neutral Oil Cooking Spray
3/4 cup unbleached all-purpose flour (105g), plus more for the pan
1/4 cup (35g) unsweetened cocoa powder
3/4 tsp aluminium free baking powder
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 cup (60g) whole milk
1/4 cup (60g) heavy cream
2 tsp vanilla extract
6 Tbsp (90g) unsalted butter, at room temperature
3/4 cup (150g) granulated sugar
2 large eggs

Chocolate Buttercream
6 Tbsp (90g) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 1/4 cups powdered sugar, sifted
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 Tbsp heavy cream
1 tsp vanilla extract
pinch kosher salt

Garnishes to finish : Coconut, pumpkin seeds and cacao nibs, or sprinkles of your choice

 

- PROCESS -

CHOCOLATE CAKE

Preheat the oven to 350˚f / 180˚c. Lightly spray the interior sides of an 8 inch round or square pan with cooking spray. Use a paper towel to wipe smooth. Add a spoonful of flour and shake around the edges to lightly coat. Discard extra flour. Line the bottom of the pan with parchment paper cut to size. Set aside. 

In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, and salt. Set aside. 

In a liquid measuring cup, measure the milk, cream, and vanilla. Set aside. 

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together butter and sugar on the lowest speed for 3-5 minutes. (This will feel odd.) When ready, the butter mixture will begin sticking to the sides of the bowl. Add the eggs, one at a time, scraping down the sides after each addition; mix until completely combined. 

With the mixer speed still on low, add the dry ingredients alternately with the wet ingredients in three additions each. This should take 1 minute. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, and then beat again on medium-high for 5 seconds to develop the batter. Pour the batter into the prepared pan, and smooth the top with a spatula. Bake for 25 to 28 minutes, or until a light finger poke to the top bounces back and a crumb of chocolate remains on a toothpick. Let the cake cool in the pan for 10 minutes before running a thin knife around the edge. Transfer to a cooling rack.

CHOCOLATE BUTTERCREAM

In a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, add all of the buttercream ingredients. Beat on low to incorporate. Once combined, beat on high until pale and fluffy, about 4 minutes. The frosting will be pale in colour but will deepen as it rests. 

ASSEMBLY

If you are frosting a round cake: Add about two-thirds of the frosting to the top of the cake. Using a spatula, spread the remaining frosting snugly around the sides of the cake, letting the sides of the cake show. Spinning the cake in a circular motion with your spatula pressing down gently in the centre, pull the frosting flat, allowing it to pool at the edges. Pull the spatula around the outside edges once more to connect the sides and top. Lightly sprinkle with garnishes. 

Alternatively, add all the icing to the top of the cake. Spread out with an offset spatula, creating swoops. Add garnishes. 

This cake is best after a 2-hour rest. Store covered at room temp for up to 3 days. 

Chocolate Snack Cake with Chocolate Buttercream - the perfect cake recipe to have in your back pocket. Tender chocolate cake topped with fluffy chocolate buttercream #chocolatecake #snackcake

This recipe was reprinted with permission from The Minimalist Kitchen, ©2018 Melissa Coleman. The Minimalist Kitchen was published by Oxmoor House, 2018