This recipe evolved from David Lebovitz's ginger cake, a recipe that I found way back in the day in his first book, Room For Dessert. It appears again in his most recent book, Ready For Dessert, which is much easier to get your hands on, in case you don't have one or all of his books like we do. Anyway the fresh ginger cake has been a favorite for years. I never messed with it because it was so good. But the other night we needed something for show and tell (the letter of the week was G) and I didn't quite have all of the ingredients and I needed to make the cake recipe kid-friendly so Amaya could help make it. After all it can't be for show and tell unless she has a hand in it. So we made some changes and added a ginger ale glaze because she and Alex love frosting of any kind. The new version of the cake is pretty amazing, good enough to rival the original. I still encourage you to buy at least one of his books if you don't have them because nobody does dessert like David Lebovitz. In spite of a house full of cookies and pie this cake disappeared at record speed.
Glazed Ginger Cake
85 grams / 3 ounces peeled and sliced fresh ginger
200 grams / 1 cup sugar
4.5 grams/ 3/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
0.5 grams / ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
2 grams / 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
0.5 grams / ¼ teaspoon ground mace
225 grams / 1 cup water
10 grams / 2 teaspoons baking soda
340 grams / 1 cup molasses
225 grams / 8 ounces melted butter
375 grams / 2 ½ cups all purpose flour
450 grams / 2 cups powdered sugar
1.5 grams/ 1/4 teaspooon salt
55 grams/ ¼ cup spicy ginger ale
Preheat oven to 350°F/ 175°C
Butter a 10-inch 2-piece Angel Food cake pan and place on a baking sheet lined with a silicone mat covered with a sheet of parchment paper.
Put the fresh ginger, sugar,salt, ground ginger, cinnamon, and mace in a food processor and pulse until the fresh ginger has been ground into the sugar. Put 1 cup of water in a large measuring cup and microwave for 1 minute. Add the baking soda and stir to dissolve. Add the molasses and stir well to blend. Set aside. Add the eggs to the food processor one at a time, pulsing to blend. Turn the processor on and stream in the melted butter. Stop the food processor and add all of the flour, pulsing to blend. Turn the food processor back on and stream in the water/molasses mixture, stopping the machine as soon as it has been absorbed. The batter will be thin. Pour the batter into the prepared cake pan and bake for about 1 hour and 10 minutes, until a skewer comes out clean or the internal temperature of the cake reaches between 190-195°F / 88-90°C. Let the cake cool completely and remove from the pan.
Put the powdered sugar and salt into a large measuring cup and slowly whisk in the ginger ale until the glaze is smooth and pourable. Drizzle the glaze over the top of the cake. Let it rest, uncovered, for at least 2 hours so the glaze can set.