The warm and spicy flavors of gingerbread are one of my favorite flavors and smells of this time of year. The combination of cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg and of course ginger immediately take me back to my childhood when a warm slice of cake topped with real whipped cream made a regular appearance on our dessert table.
This recipe, from King Arthur Flour, puts one of my favorite cakes in a new shape and tops it with a very adult icing. I personally love the flavor of rum in the icing. However, if rum isn’t your thing, feel free to substitute water or even a mixture of rum and water when making the icing. Or you could skip the icing and serve the cake topped with a dollop of whipped cream.
For the cake:
1/2 teaspoon cloves
1/2 teaspoon allspice
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
3/4 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 1/2 cups brown sugar, packed
2 large eggs
1/2 cup molasses
1 cup water
For the glaze:
1/3 cup rum or water
1/4 teaspoon ginger
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
3/4 cup granulated sugar
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly grease a 10- to 12-cup bundt-style pan and set aside.
- In a large bowl whisk together the flour, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, allspice, salt, baking soda, and baking powder. Set aside.
- In a separate bowl, using an electric mixer set on medium speed, beat together the butter and sugar until fluffy.
- Add the eggs one at a time, beating well and scraping the bottom and sides of the bowl after each addition. Stir in the molasses.
- Add the flour mixture in three additions alternately with the water, starting and ending with the flour. Mix just until smooth.
- Pour the batter into the prepared pan, smoothing the top.
- Bake the cake for 45 to 55 minutes, or until a cake tester inserted into the center comes out clean.
- While the cake is baking, make the glaze by stirring together the water, spices and sugar in a small sauce pan set over low heat.
- Stir occasionally until the sugar as completely dissolved. Set aside.
- Remove the cake from the oven, cool it in the pan for 10 minutes, then turn it out onto a rack.
- Brush the cake with the glaze, and allow it to cool completely before serving.
Yields: 12-16 slices