Orange Spice Cake

Makes 1 (9-inch) cake

1 1/2 cups butter, softened
3 cups sugar
6 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
5 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
2 teaspoons ground ginger
2 teaspoons ground nutmeg
2 1/2 cups half-and-half
1 cup orange marmalade
Almond Frosting (recipe below)
Garnish: candied oranges, sliced almonds

1. Preheat oven to 350°. Spray 3 (9-inch) round cake pans with baking spray with flour.
2. In a large bowl, combine butter and sugar. Beat at medium speed with an electric mixer until fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in vanilla.
3. In a separate bowl, combine flour, baking powder, cinnamon, ginger, and nutmeg. Add flour mixture to butter mixture alternately with half-and-half, beginning and ending with flour mixture. Spoon batter into prepared pans. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pans for 10 minutes. Remove cakes from pans; cool completely on wire racks.
4. Spread orange marmalade evenly on top of first 2 cake layers. Top with remaining cake layer. Spread Almond Frosting evenly over top and sides of cake. Garnish with candied oranges and sliced almonds, if desired.

Almond Frosting

Makes about 5 cups

2 (4-ounce) white chocolate baking bars, chopped
1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, softened
1 teaspoon almond extract
6 cups confectioners’ sugar

1. In a small bowl, combine white chocolate and cream. Microwave on High in 30-second intervals, stirring between each, until melted and smooth (about 1 minute total). Set aside to cool completely.
2. In a large bowl, combine butter, cream cheese, and almond extract. Beat at medium speed with an electric mixer until light and creamy. Beat in white chocolate mixture. Gradually add confectioners’ sugar, beating until combined.

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