Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Tea Bread Tuesday: Gingerbread Cake

Why is gingerbread traditionally baked in a square pan?  I mentioned to a co-worker that I'd be baking a loaf of gingerbread this week and she immediately corrected me.  Not a loaf, she says, but a square.  Why?  Because.  That was the explanation she gave me . . . and I haven't been able to improve on that despite a cursory search on the internet . . . so I wasn't about to mess with tradition . . .

I loved this bread!  Full disclosure:  Lee thought it was too sweet.  Perhaps, but I think that it's just a strong-tasting bread.  Imagine the taste of molasses, ginger, cinnamon and lemon, all combined into one recipe.  Subtle is one word that could not be applied to describe it.  It needs the sugar, but I'll make it again, and perhaps I'll try it without the lemon glaze to see if my DH likes it better that way.

Here's the recipe:

1½ cups unbleached, all-purpose flour
¾ teaspoon ground ginger
¾ teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
½ salt
½ cup shortening
¼ cup packed light brown sugar
1 egg
½ cup molasses
½ cup boiling water


3 tablespoons of freshly squeezed lemon juice
2/3 cups powder sugar

Preheat oven to 350°F.  Grease and flour a square baking pan.  Combine dry ingredients in a small bowl.  Set aside.  In a large bowl, mix together the shortening, sugar, egg.  Add molasses and water.  Slowly add dry ingredients until combined.  Pour into prepared baking pan and bake for 30-35 minutes or until toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.  Cool in pan for 10 minutes, then invert in serving dish. 

Make the glaze:  Combine the lemon juice and powder sugar in a small bowl until sugar is completely dissolved.  Pour over warm gingerbread.  Cover and let it sit overnight.  By morning, the glaze will have been completely absorbed.

3 more days til Christmas Eve!


Angela2932 said...

I love gingerbread! Square? I had no idea! I just baked some this weekend, and it called for a 9 x 13 inch pan, so I'm not entirely convinced that this is a sacrosanct RULE. (Maybe just someone's tradition.)

Janett said...

I've never heard of a gingerbread square? How bizarre! Looks yum though. :)

Beth said...

I have never actually baked any ginger bread! Yours sure looks softer than the cement blocks that come in the ginger bread house kits!

Yolanda said...

I bet your house smelled yummy while that was baking!

pat said...

If it;s square, then all the pieces have that yummy top for the whipped cream to sit upon. This sounds delicious--and I bet your house smelled heavenly!!

Maria@BubblegumandDuctTape said...

oh that looks delicious, thanks for the recipe. I don't know the answer either, I guess it's just tradition.

Happy Holidays to you and your family.

Barb said...

I really like Ginger Bread. I copied the recipe and will prbably try it withing the next couple of days.

Nicki said...

Normally my family is all over bread - but when it comes to gingerbread, its cookies or nothing with them. I suspect that if I did a light icing over the bread they'd be content (whipped cream is oddly not in my son's limited food choice vocabulary). This looks very moist and delicious. (Like the beautifully wrapped package beside it as well).

Jill said...

OOOOH! That looks yummy!!!!! I wonder if the loaf/square thing makes a difference, because my husband isn't a big fan of loaf breads, but I love them.

Maybe I should bake today! I've never made gingerbread. We've had so much bar mitzvah food leftover that I haven't cooked a thing all week.