Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Gramercy Tavern Gingerbread

Swiped directly from With the belief that food time is play time and that cooking should be an ongoing experiment in tasting and smelling and intuiting what foods/spices/herbs belong together, I am usually unable to follow recipes with any precision. When it comes to baking, however, I am under the impression that there is a very strict magic at work that turns goo into cake (or bread or pie or whatever other wonderfully sweet treat you are creating). So after reading rave reviews about this gingerbread, I decided I had to make it, and made no alteration other than to use fresh ginger instead of powdered and whole wheat flour instead of all-purpose. I think that nutty chewiness that the whole wheat flour adds is actually quite lovely. Let me know what you think!

1 C Guinness Stout
1 C dark molasses (not blackstrap)
1/2 tsp baking soda
2 C whole wheat flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 C grated fresh ginger (or 2 TBSP ground ginger)
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground cloves
1/4 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
Pinch of ground cardamom
3 large eggs
1 C packed dark brown sugar
1 C granulated sugar
3/4 C vegetable oil
Confectioners sugar for dusting

Generously butter a 10" bundt or springform pan and dust with flour, knocking out excess.

Bring stout and molasses to a boil in a saucepan and remove from heat. Whisk in baking soda, then cool to room temperature.

Meanwhile, sift together flour, baking powder, and spices in a large bowl. In a separate bowl, whisk together eggs, sugars, and fresh ginger (if you're using ground ginger, add it with the other spices to the flour). Whisk in oil, then cooled molasses mixture. Add to flour mixture and whisk until just combined.

Pour batter into pan and rap pan sharply on counter to eliminate air bubbles. Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven until a tester comes out with just a few moist crumbs adhering, about 50 minutes. Watch carefully to keep from burning! Cool cake in pan on a rack 5 minutes. Turn out onto rack and cool completely.

Dust cake with confectioners sugar, and serve with freshly whipped unsweetened cream. Gingerbread is better if made a day ahead, and will keep 3 days, covered, at room temperature.

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