Photo: Iain Bagwell; Styling: Dan Becker
- 1 cup chopped dried figs
- Cooking-oil spray
- 3/4 cup packed dark brown sugar
- 1/2 cup plus 6 tbsp. butter, divided, at room temperature
- 1/4 cup molasses (not blackstrap)
- 1 3/4 teaspoons vanilla extract, divided
- 1 large egg plus 1 large egg yolk, at room temperature
- 1 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup plus 6 tbsp. flour
- 1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- About 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
- 1 1/2 tablespoons milk
- 22 to 25 Australian crystallized ginger discs* (8 to 10 oz.)
- Granulated sugar, for sprinkling
1 Hour, 45 Minutes
- 1. Preheat oven to 350°. Put figs in a small bowl and pour in boiling water to cover.
- 2. Spray pans with cooking spray. In a bowl, using a mixer on medium speed, beat brown sugar with 1/2 cup butter until fluffy and pale, then add molasses, 1 tsp. vanilla, egg, egg yolk, spices, and salt and beat well.
- 3. Whisk flour, baking powder, and baking soda in a bowl. With mixer on low speed, gradually add flour mixture to wet mixture and beat until smooth; then beat in 3/4 cup boiling water. Drain figs and stir into batter.
- 4. Divide batter among pans and bake until a toothpick inserted in centers comes out clean, 20 minutes. Cool cakes 10 minutes, then invert onto a rack, using a small spatula or knife if necessary to loosen them.
- 5. Beat 6 tbsp. butter in a bowl until creamy, with mixer on medium speed. Add 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar, 3/4 tsp. vanilla, and milk and beat until smooth. You should be able to stand a spoon in it; if not, beat in a little more powdered sugar to thicken.
- 6. Slice thin strips of ginger from discs using a vegetable peeler. Dip peeler in hot water and dry off between slices to keep ginger from sticking. You will need 70 to 100 strips to top cakes.
- 7. Spread frosting onto cakes and arrange ginger strips in a bow pattern on tops of cakes. Sprinkle with sugar to finish.
- *Find Australian crystallized ginger in the baking aisle.
- Note: Nutritional analysis is per cake.
- Calories: 282
- Calories from fat: 30%
- Protein: 1.9g
- Fat: 9.7g
- Saturated fat: 5.9g
- Carbohydrate: 48g
- Fiber: 1.2g
- Sodium: 163mg
- Cholesterol: 47mg