1 cup molasses
1 cup hot water
3 cups flour
1 1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 1/2 tsp. ground ginger
1 1/2 tsp. ground cloves
1/2 tsp. salt
10 Tbsp. butter, room temperature
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
3 large eggs, 1 whole and 2 separated, room temperature
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 cup (8 Tbsp.) butter
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/2 tsp. vanilla
5 cups powdered sugar
MERINGUE SNOWFLAKE INGREDIENTS
2 egg whites
1/4 tsp. cream of tartar
1 cup powdered sugar, sifted
1/4 tsp. vanilla
1/2 tsp. Silver dragee decors, if desired
1-2 Tbsp. powdered sugar, for garnish
*Possible white chocolate snowflake option – have white baking chips available
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease two 9” cake pans and line the bottom with a round of parchment.
- In a 2-cup size measuring cup, mix molasses and hot water – set aside. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, ginger, cinnamon, cloves and salt.
- Using a stand mixer or a hand mixer with a large bowl, beat the butter and brown sugar together on medium speed until smooth and creamy, about 2 minutes. Add the egg and two egg yolks (reserve the two whites for the meringues), sour cream and vanilla and continue to beat until combined. At a low speed, add the dry ingredients and the molasses mixture alternating in three additions. Mix until just combined. Pour batter into the two prepared pans and bake for 25-30 minutes. Let cool and remove parchment.
- For the frosting, over medium low heat, melt the butter and brown sugar until a low boil – cook for 2 minutes. Remove from heat and add the salt, heavy cream and vanilla – let cool. Pour this mixture into a stand mixer and add the powdered sugar 1/2 cup at a time until it reaches a smooth, thick consistency. Set aside.
- For the snowflake meringues, using a stand mixer with a whisk attachment or a hand mixer and a large bowl, beat the egg whites and cream of tartar at a high speed until foamy. Add the powdered sugar 1 tablespoon at a time, until the mixture is glossy and has stiff peaks. Add the vanilla.
- Line two baking sheets with parchment paper and lightly spray them with baking spray. Using a piping bag and a small tip, draw small and medium stars on paper. Add silver dragée decors if desired. Bake at 225°F degrees for 20-30 minutes (depending on the size of your stars). They should be mostly dry. Turn off the oven and let them cool inside the oven.
- To assemble, place one cake round on a plate or platter. Frost the middle and then stack the second round on top. Frost the top and then decorate with meringue stars. Dust with powdered sugar.