I love ginger. I love mascarpone. I love cakes. Many times I said it here, I’m trying to bake cakes or tarts once a week, to not abuse too much of the sweets. But lately, I have been so busy with work and exams that I even do not remember when I baked last time. Therefore, I had to bake something. The winter is nothing, without the beautiful smell of something just baked.
When Brîndusa told me about her ginger challenge, I though this wonderful bundt cake would make the perfect choice. I have almost all the time some fresh ginger in my house. Either I will use it for tea, cakes or spice bread, I love this wonderful root. Since the challenge was to use the root, I was thinking about something even more challenging, to make and use candied ginger. You can not imagine how wonderful tastes the candied ginger. A bit spicy, full of flavor, crunchy and sweet. After you will try this recipe, for sure you’ll stop buying sweets and prepare your own at home.
Another challenge that I build for myself (otherwise how you’ll improve without challenges) was that I wanted to have a setup all in white because is winter. So, I created a cozy, still fresh white place, where I could take photographs of the cake. But, of course, when it is too much white, it can be very difficult to obtain a balanced photograph and nice details. Since the candied ginger looked so transparent and shiny like little diamonds, I balanced the sea of white with little golden stars and neutral fabrics. What I find difficult each time that I’m taking a photographs is the harmony of the things I want to photograph.
Styling and harmony are transforming – an ordinary good executed photograph – in a wonderful artistically photograph. I’m spending time to find nice props that will represent my photography style, my mood and food. I think you can not separate the food photography from styling and harmony, otherwise you will have as result just savorless and insipidity photography.
This bundt cake is very soft and is marrying well with the amazing mascarpone glaze that I made. Is not very sweet, because I don’t like cakes to be too much sweet than is actually necessary, and it’s full of flavor due to the lemon juice and zest and of course because of the ginger.
Lemon Bundt with Candied Ginger and Mascarpone Glaze (recipe adapted from Martha Stewart)
Ingredients for the cake:
150g unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for pan
250g all-purpose flour, plus more for pan
1 tablespoon finely grated lemon zest
1 lemon fresh juice
3 tablespoons candied ginger
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon powder ginger
200g granulated sugar
4 large eggs
150g sour cream
Ingredients for the candied ginger:
1 root fresh ginger peeled and cut in small cubes
2 cup water
150g granulated sugar
2 tablespoons of granulated sugar for dusting
Ingredients for the mascarpone glaze:
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 tablespoon water
200g mascarpone cream
150g sour cream
Directions for the cake:
1. Preheat oven to 180°C. Butter and flour a standard bundt pan. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, lemon zest, ginger, baking soda, and salt; set aside.
2. Using an electric mixer, beat butter and granulated sugar on medium-high until light and fluffy, 4 to 5 minutes. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition; mix in lemon juice.
3. With mixer on low, alternately add flour mixture in three parts and sour cream in two, beginning and ending with flour mixture; mix just until incorporated (do not overmix). Spoon batter into prepared pan, and smooth top with a rubber spatula. Firmly tap pan on a work surface to level batter.
4. Bake until a toothpick inserted in center of cake comes out clean, 20-30 minutes (if cake browns too quickly, tent loosely with aluminum foil or decrease the temperature to 150°C). Let cake cool in pan 30 minutes, then turn out onto a rack to cool completely. Serve it with with mascarpone glaze and candied ginger.
Directions for the candied ginger:
1. Cut 1 small ginger root in small cubes. Place on the stove a pot with 2 cups of water and 150g sugar and cook until the sugar is dissolved. When is starting to boil, carefully add the ginger cubes and cook for 30 to 40 minutes at medium heat. The ginger should be translucent and soft, yet crunchy.
2. Using a fine mesh take out the ginger and place it on a rack to cool. When it has cooled enough dust it in sugar.
Directions for the mascarpone glaze:
1. In a small pot bring to a boil 2 tablespoons of sugar with one tablespoon of water. When sugar is completely dissolved and the consistency of the mixture is like a syrup (in aprox.2-3 minutes), set aside to cool.
2. Using the electric mixer beat for 2 minutes the mascarpone cream with the sour cream. Carefully pour in the cooled syrup stirring continuously. Use the glaze to decorate the bundt cake.