Gingerbread always makes me feel warm and toasty. It evokes memories of my childhood and my maternal Grandmother. Sitting in her kitchen, eyes wide and mouth watering for that warm gingerbread to come out of the oven. It was always a cake and a few gingerbread cookies. I recall, with fondness, her tall tale. "You cannot peak in the oven (for this was before there were glass windows on stoves) or the Gingerbread man will hop up and run away." Oh what fantasies that tall tale would birth.
In honor of my loving Grandmother...
Moist Gingerbread Cake With Lemon Glaze
Butter for greasing
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
2 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg, preferably fresh
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup, packed, dark brown sugar
3 tablespoons turbinado sugar
2 1/2 tablespoons finely grated fresh ginger (a 2-ounce piece, peeled)
Grated zest of 2 lemons
1/2 cup grapeseed oil
1 large egg
3/4 cup stout beer
3/4 cup molasses
1/3 cup brewed coffee
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup confectioners’ sugar, sifted
2 tablespoons lemon juice.
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Grease an 8-inch springform cake pan and line bottom with parchment paper.
2. In a bowl, whisk flour, cocoa, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Set aside. In a large bowl combine brown sugar, turbinado, ginger, zest of 1 lemon and oil. Beat in egg.
3. Place beer, molasses and coffee in a deep pot, at least 3 quarts. Bring to a boil. Remove from heat and stir in baking soda. Mixture will bubble up. Allow to cool 5 minutes.
4. Whisk flour mixture alternately with beer mixture into brown sugar mixture, in 3 shifts. Pour batter in pan and bake 40 minutes without opening oven. Give pan a 180-degree turn and bake another 15 minutes, until cake is springy and a tester comes out clean. Cool on a rack. When cool, remove sides of pan, invert briefly to remove bottom of pan and paper and set upright on a plate.
5. Place confectioners’ sugar in a bowl, whisk in remaining zest and salt, then lemon juice. Spread over top of cake, allowing glaze to drip down the sides.
Yield: 8 servings.