Friday, June 15, 2007

Old-Fashioned Gingerbread

  • 2 1/4 cups sifted, unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons ground dried ginger
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1 teaspoon Dutch-processed cocoa
  • 8 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted, then cooled to room temperature
  • 3/4 cup light unsulphured molasses
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 large egg
  • Orange Sauce for Gingerbread (optional)

1. Adjust oven rack to center position and heat oven to 350 degrees.

2. Whisk together flour, baking soda, salt, ginger, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, allspice, and cocoa in medium bowl.

3. Beat butter, molasses, sugar, buttermilk, milk, and egg in large bowl of an electric mixer on low speed.

4. Add dry ingredients to liquid; beat on medium speed until batter is smooth and thick, about 1 minute, scraping down sides of bowl with rubber spatula as needed. Do not overmix. (If using the fresh ginger, batter will be lumpy.)

5. Working quickly, pour batter into nonstick 11-by-7-by-1 1/2-inch rectangular metal baking pan and smooth surface. (If you do not have a nonstick baking pan, then use no-stick cooking spray or solid vegetable shortening to grease pan sides and bottom, then dust with flour.)

6. Bake until top springs back when lightly touched, and edges have pulled away from the pan sides, about 35 to 45 minutes.

7. Set pan on wire cake rack and let cool 5 to 10 minutes. Serve hot, warm, or at room temperature. (Gingerbread can be wrapped in plastic wrap, then foil, and refrigerated up to 5 days.)

  • For stronger ginger flavor, replace the dried ginger with three tablespoons grated peeled fresh ginger root and three tablespoons minced crystallized ginger.

    Yield: 8 servings

    from Cooks Illustrated

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