Gingerbread Red Velvet Cake

 

If I was only bringing one dessert, one cake, to a holiday dinner party, this would be it. It's a real showstopper.

What you will need

1/4 cup warm water

1/4 cup unsweetened natural cocoa powder

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom

1/4 teaspoon ground cloves

1/4 teaspoon ground white pepper

1/4 teaspoon fine salt

2 sticks (8 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature

1 3/4 cups packed dark brown sugar

4 large eggs

1/4 cup molasses

2 teaspoons vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste

3 to 3 1/2 tablespoons peeled and grated fresh ginger (from a 3-inch piece)

1 cup buttermilk

2 (1-ounce) bottles red food coloring or 1 teaspoon red food paste

6 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature

8 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature

1 teaspoon vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste

4 cups powdered sugar

2 to 4 tablespoons heavy cream, light cream, or half-and-half

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