I had made this gingerbread cake last Friday, ahead of time for a party, planning to serve it with lemon sauce. Except it did not turn out looking like it was fit for anything besides perhaps a demolition party...
I froze it, and vowed to figure out something - waste not, want not! And it hit me - we cut up cakes on purpose for trifles, so why not make one from a cake that fell apart? I brainstormed flavors that go well with gingerbread with my mom, and here is what I came up with...
9" round Gingerbread Cake (find recipe here, or use a box mix from the store), cut up into 1" (or smaller) cubes
1 pkg. cheesecake pudding mix
1 1/2 c. milk
1 8 oz. container of cool whip (I made real whipped cream instead, because I had it on hand)
1 c. chopped pecans
1 small jar of caramel sauce, or melt down 1 14 oz. package of caramels with about 1/4 c. milk, in a small saucepan over low-med. heat stirring til smooth
Whisk the pudding and milk together, then fold in most of the cool whip (reserving 1/2 c. for garnish)
In a trifle dish or large serving bowl, layer as follows:
1/3 of the gingerbread cake (press down gently)
1/4 of the caramel sauce
1/4 of the pecans
1/3 of the pudding mixture
repeat this pattern 2x
Finish with the reserved cool whip, drizzle with remaining caramel, and sprinkle with the remaining pecans.
Chill. This is best when made at least 12 hours ahead of time, for the cake to soak up the moisture.
I've also used this for my Self Portrait Challenge photo this week, as December's theme is "Idioms"... my idiom of the week is, "When life gives you lemons, make lemonade." Or a trifle. Either will work!