Use two 6-mold nonstick mini-Bundt-cake pans or giant-muffin tins for these.
- 2/3cup dried apricots, thinly sliced
- 3tablespoons chopped crystallized ginger1cup sugar
- 3tablespoons water
- 1tablespoon light corn syrup
- 1tablespoon salted butter
- 2/3cup whipping cream
- 1teaspoon vanilla extractcakes
- nonstick vegetable oil spray
- 2 1/2cups all purpose flour
- 4teaspoons ground ginger
- 2teaspoons baking soda
- 1 1/2teaspoons ground allspice
- 1cup hot water
- 1tablespoon instant espresso powder
- 1cup (packed) golden brown sugar
- 3/4cup (1 1/2 sticks) salted butter, room temperature
- 1cup mild-flavored (light) molasses
- 2large eggs
- 2tablespoons finely grated peeled fresh ginger
- 2teaspoons sugar
DIRECTIONS For sauce:Combine apricots and ginger in small bowl. Pour enough boiling water over just to cover; let soften 10 minutes. Drain; pat dry with paper towels.
Combine sugar, 3 tablespoons water, and corn syrup in heavy medium skillet. Stir over low heat until sugar dissolves. Increase heat; boil until syrup is deep amber color, brushing down sides with wet pastry brush and swirling pan occasionally, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat. Mix in butter, apricots, and ginger. Add cream and vanilla. Stir over low heat until caramel bits dissolve and sauce is smooth. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover; chill. Rewarm over low heat before serving.)
For cakes:Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray 9 mini-Bundt molds with nonstick spray; generously butter same molds. Sift flour, ground ginger, baking soda, and allspice into medium bowl. Combine 1 cup hot water and espresso powder in small bowl and stir to dissolve. Using electric mixer, beat brown sugar and butter in large bowl until blended. Beat in molasses, then eggs and fresh ginger. Beat in flour mixture in 3 additions alternately with espresso mixture in 2 additions. Divide among 9 prepared molds. Sprinkle with 2 teaspoons sugar.
Bake cakes until tester inserted near center comes out clean, about 20 minutes. Cool cakes in pans 10 minutes; turn out onto baking sheet. (Can be made 6 hours ahead; let stand at room temperature. Rewarm in 350°F oven 8 minutes.) Serve ginger cakes warm with warm apricot sauce.