Thursday, August 28, 2014

Stack Cake

Stack cake is an old pioneer recipe, usually served at weddings.  Each guest would bring a cake layer, which was spread with applesauce then the layers were stacked.  The brides popularity was measured by how tall the cake was.  This recipe is a molasses cake with an unusual ingredient, it's laced with beer and topped with a whipped lemon cream cheese frosting.  This cake was made for a birthday but what a fabulous wedding cake it would be!

Makes 6 thin 8 inch layers, serves 16
For the applesauce...
9-10 medium sized granny smith apples
1/2 cup sugar or to your taste
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
For the cake...
1 cup butter, room temperature
1 cup sugar
1 cup molasses
3 eggs
4 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup beer, I used a lager

For the frosting...
3 ounces cream cheese, full fat, room temperature
1 cup cold heavy cream
1/2 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
finely grated zest of 1/2 a lemon
Grease and flour 6- 8" pans.  If you don't have 6- 8inch pans than bake in batches, cleaning and greasing each time.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
To make the applesauce, peel, core and cut the apples into 1 inch pieces and place in a large saucepan.  Add 1/2 cup water and cover pan.  Place on medium high heat and bring to a simmer.  Reduce heat to medium and stirring frequently, continue to cook until apples are tender, being careful not to scorch the apples.  Remove the pan from the heat and add sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg,  Stir well.  Cool to room temperature.
To make the cake layers, in a mixing bowl, cream the butter and the sugar until light and fluffy.  Add the eggs, one at a time, mixing well between each addition.  Add molasses and mix well.  
Sift the dry ingredients together and add to the creamed mixture alternately with the beer, starting with the flour and ending with the flour, beating well after each addition. 

Divide batter evenly between each pan (1 1/2 cups per pan).  Bake for 15 minutes until toothpick inserted into center of cake comes out clean.  Remove from the oven and cool on wire racks.
To make the frosting, in a mixing bowl 
using a paddle attachment, cream the cream cheese until light.  Add sugar, vanilla and lemon zest, mix until well combined.  Switch out the paddle attachment with a whisk attachment, and add heavy cream.  Whisk until smooth and of spreading consistency. 

To assemble the cake, place the first cake layer on a cake plate and spread a layer of applesauce over it.  Repeat with the next 4 layers.  Place the last layer on top and swirl frosting over top.  Refrigerate for at least 2 hours or up to a day before serving.  This cake is delicious served cold and slice into thin slices, this cake is very tall.  Enjoy!

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