I’m in love with this Maple Cream. There. I said it. Admittedly, it’s not a monogamous love affair–when I think about my favorite sweets, I also love those maple sugar candies, (the ones that come in cute little shapes of leaves and Pilgrims and such) and of course rich dark pure maple syrup, (not to mention the whole world of chocolate…) but my blog is about using local ingredients, so we won’t be talking about chocolate today.
I first purchased the maple cream at the Marshfield Farmer’s Market last summer, and then was delighted to find it again at the winter market in Plymouth (indoors on the second Thursday afternoon of the month at the Plantation.) The folks at Nutting Farm have a product I’ve never seen elsewhere in my travels; it’s like a cross between maple syrup and a creamy spread. Maybe it’s maple jam? I have primarily used it as a spread on toast, (either with or without peanut butter or almond butter), and have also used it as an icing on an apple cake.
This time, being the dead of winter, my baking project survived two (2) criteria: it had to involve stuff I already had in my pantry without going out for anything, and secondly, I wanted to use as much local as possible. (Okay, well, Blackstrap Molasses isn’t exactly local but we did have the great molasses flood in Boston.) So I thought some type of ginger cookie could be glazed with the maple cream, and then when I went into my huge file box of recipes, I was reminded of another love of mine: gingerbread cakes!
I must have 2 dozen of those recipes (pumpkin gingerbread, apple gingerbread, chocolate gingerbread etc.), so I sort of combined an old Bon Appetit recipe, with a Cooking Light recipe, and made my own substitutions to come up with this dark gingerbread applesauce maple creation. If I make it again, I would try to figure a way to incorporate more of the chunky apple sauce I picked up at Roche Bros after the last snow storm. I think it would also be neat to see how it tastes with the lighter-type molasses (which I never have and which the recipes always call for). Blackstrap molasses is an excellent source of iron for those who don’t get iron from meat. The maple cream I used both as a glaze on the cake and in the whipped cream.
Dark Gingerbread Cake With
Maple Cream Whipped Cream
- 2 ¼ C all-purpose flour
- 1 C whole wheat flour
- 5 teaspoons ground ginger
- 2 ½ t baking soda
- 1 ½ t cinnamon
- ¼ t salt
- 1 Cup maple sugar (you can use regular sugar)
- ¼ C whole milk or Greek-style yogurt or sour cream
- 2 large eggs
- 2/3 C blackstrap molasses (original called for 1 Cup light-flavored molasses and no applesauce)
- 1/3 C chunky applesauce
- 2 t vanilla extract
- 1 C boiling water
- 1 C vegetable oil
- Preheat oven to 350 F.
- Butter and flour a 12-Cup Bundt pan.
- Sift first 6 ingredients into a medium bowl.
- Whisk molasses, sugar, yogurt or sour cream, eggs, applesauce and vanilla in large bowl until well blended.
- Whisk in 1 Cup boiling water and oil, then add dry ingredients.
- Pour batter into prepared pan.
- Bake cake for 45 minutes or until tester inserted in center comes out clean.
- Cool in pan for 20 minutes.
- Turn onto plate and cool.
- Spread a few tablespoons of maple cream onto top of cake while still slightly warm.
For maple whipped cream: Place 1 pint of heavy whipping cream into a bowl and beat until the mixture starts to thicken. (Yes, I did have heavy cream in my fridge!) Add a few tablespoons, to taste, of the maple Cream and continue to beat until whipped cream is of desired thickness. Keep tasting and adding more Maple Cream to taste. In all fairness, you could use pure maple syrup in the whipped cream as well. Delicious mid-winter dessert.
Have you tried Nutting Farm’s Maple Cream? Do you have any exciting ideas about how to use it? Leave me a reply and let me know what you think!
by: Katherine Rossmoore is an integrative health and wellness guide, using her love of clean whole foods and cooking to help people demystify the healthy kitchen. She is also a writer, mother and certified yoga teacher. Find her at www.betterlivingthroughfoods.com.