Saturday, February 6, 2010

Saturday Splurge: Gingerbread

I'm not talking about cookies, here. I don't like gingerbread cookies. There is just something seriously wrong with them. Of course, I have nothing against ginger. Ginger ale. Ginger tea. Ginger in chutney or peanut sauce is a must. But those cookies... yuck. Ginger snaps, too. Sometimes I started disliking stuff when I was little (like mushrooms) and then I've tried it again later and loved it (like mushrooms.) I tried ginger snaps again this week. I'm sorry, no. I even tried chocolate-covered crystalized ginger because it sounded cool. It was too strong for me, but way better than those crap cookie things.

However, I tried a friend's gingerbread once, and it was good. So I decided a couple of weeks ago that I need to make some of my own. After a bit of searching on my favorite recipe bloggers, I found it. Smitten kitchen finds them for me again! One of the things that told me I had to try it is that she said she didn't know she liked gingerbread before this one. And it has Guinness in it. Ok, it can use any stout. Next time I'll go for Young's Double Chocolate stout. (mmmmm) It gets brought to a boil for a few minutes, so I'm fairly certain any actual alcohol content evaporates, making it 100% safe to serve to all ages. For those of you non-alcoholers, others suggested coke. Please try it (please, seriously!!) and tell me how it turns out.

This is a splurge more for the time than the nutrition - it has a relatively low amount of oil, but the sugar likely makes up for it. And don't think you can only make this at Christmas, as everyone here loved it. I think we went through about 40 pieces in 30 minutes. I reserved 3 pieces just to get to try it the next day (when I had the time to snap a pic, too), since she said it ages well. Mmm. The pic is mine, but I am cutting and pasting the recipe exactly because it was perfect.

Grammercy Tavern's Gingerbread
Serves: about 20 if the pieces are real-sized Time: about 30 minutes, plus 50 minutes to bake and 10 minutes to cool

1 cup oatmeal stout or Guinness Stout
1 cup dark molasses (not blackstrap)
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
2 tablespoons ground ginger
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
Pinch of ground cardamom
3 large eggs
1 cup packed dark brown sugar
1 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup vegetable oil
Confectioners sugar for dusting

Accompaniment: Unsweetened whipped cream

Preheat oven to 350°F. Generously butter bundt pan and dust with flour, knocking out excess. (She is not kidding about this. I used a nonstick pan with a butter/flour spray and still lost a chunk of cake. I will be more generous next time.) [Beki's note - that's from SK, I heavily buttered & floured a super long loaf pan and only lost a little in the center, but it could have been due to my impatience with the cooling.]

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

Sift together flour, baking powder, and spices in a large bowl. Whisk together eggs and sugars. Whisk in oil, then molasses mixture. Add to flour mixture and whisk until just combined.

Pour batter into bundt pan and rap pan sharply on counter to eliminate air bubbles. Bake in middle of oven until a tester comes out with just a few moist crumbs adhering, about 50 minutes. Cool cake in pan on a rack 5 minutes. Turn out onto rack and cool completely.

Serve cake, dusted with confectioners sugar, with whipped cream.

Do ahead: This gingerbread is better if made a day ahead. It will keep 3 days, covered, at room temperature. I am sure it will keep well-wrapped in the freezer even longer.


  1. Do you think one could make gingerbread cupcakes with this recipe?

  2. Karen - you may have already tried this, but I bet it would! I would start testing cupcakes after 25 minutes, though they could take longer. If you do it, let me know how it goes.


Try this and want to share how it went? Have questions before you try it? Let me know!