This rich maple ginger cake is spiced with hints of mustard giving it extra zest while the dried and fresh figs balance the sweetness of the maple syrup. Perfect for a holiday celebration, an afternoon accompaniment to tea, or just a weeknight pick-me-up!
Prep Time: 20 mins
Cooking Time: 15 – 20 minutes for cupcakes and 35 – 45 minutes for cakes
Yield/Serves: 15 cupcakes or (1) 9-inch cake
Preheat the oven to 360°F (182°C). Grease one 9-inch round springform cake pan. Line with parchment paper, grease with cooking spray. If making cupcakes, line the pan with cupcake liners and spray with cooking spray.
In a small bowl, whisk together Dijon mustard, buttermilk, and baking soda and set aside.
Using an electric mixer fit with a paddle attachment, beat together the butter, brown sugar, maple syrup, and molasses on high until fluffy.
Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, sift or vigorously whisk the flour, baking powder, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt to thoroughly combine. Set aside.
When butter mixture is mixed, add in the eggs, one at a time, until incorporated. Fold in the chopped dried fig. Add the mustard -buttermilk mixture and the flour mixture by alternating them until everything is combined. Avoid over mixing.
Pour the batter into the prepared cake pan or divide batter evenly among the prepared cupcake tins (about ¼ cup/ 62.5 mL). Bake in the center of the middle rack of oven until a toothpick inserted into the center of each comes out with moist crumbs attached, 15 – 20 minutes for cupcakes or 35 – 45 minutes for cake. Let the cake cool in the pan for 5 – 10 minutes and then remove cake from springform pan and place it on a wire rack to cool completely before frosting.
Meanwhile, make the frosting. In the bowl of the mixer fitted with the paddle, beat cream cheese, butter, maple syrup, fig jam, and dried ground mustard until soft and fluffy. Carefully incorporate powdered sugar in 3 additions, beating until combined. Adjust consistency with more syrup or sugar, if necessary. Set aside for assembly.
Prepare garnish by heating butter, maple syrup, and dry mustard powder in a small saucepan until boiling. Drop in the fresh figs, stirring gently with a rubber spatula until figs are thoroughly coated and cooked for 1 minute. Lift figs out of syrup mixture and cool on a wire rack or parchment paper.
To assemble, spread the buttercream evenly over tops of the cupcakes. If making a cake, place the cake, rounded side up, on a plate or cake stand. With a knife or offset spatula, spread the top and sides with buttercream frosting. Place the cake or cupcakes in the refrigerator and chill until ready to serve. Prior to serving, decorate the cake or cupcakes with maple butter basted figs, cookies, and/or toasted mustard seed “sprinkles.”
Serve and enjoy.