December 25, 2008

Gramercy Tavern Gingerbread

Another ginger dessert? I'm not sick of them yet because I only ate one of the gingersnaps and gave the rest away as holiday gifts.  Anyway, what's more Christmas-y than gingerbread?  

I searched epicurious for too long on Christmas Eve looking for the perfect dark, soft, sticky and spicy gingerbread recipe and this is it.  I followed some of the reviewers' comments and reduced the white sugar by 1/3 cup, added 1 tsp. more cinnamon, used cocoa powder instead of flour on one of my pans and did half applesauce half oil.  Also, this recipe is usually made using one bundt pan but I like my gingerbread in squares, so I separated the batter into two 8 x 8 brownie pans.

It came out so well.  It was super moist and had a sticky caramelized sugar crust covering the top and sides.  The original recipe says to serve it with powdered sugar and unsweetened whipped cream but I think it tastes great with a little vanilla ice cream... what doesn't?

When I ate this I also had it with a piece of chocolate cake my mom made.  I mixed the two together on my fork and loved it.  Has anyone thought of chocolate gingerbread yet?  I think it would taste amazing.  Maybe next Christmas...

Gramercy Tavern Gingerbread
Adapted from Gourmet*

  • 1 cup oatmeal stout or Guinness Stout (I used 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
  • 2 teaspoons 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 (I used light)
  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 3/8 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 3/8 cup vegetable oil

This gingerbread is better if made 1 day ahead and will keep three days covered and stored at room temperature. 

*my changes are included in the ingredients and preparation.  Click the "Gourmet" link to see the original recipe.


Preheat oven to 350°F. Generously butter two 8 x 8 brownie pans and dust with flour, knocking out excess.

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 applesauce, oil, then molasses mixture. Add to flour mixture and whisk until just combined.

Divide batter evenly between pans and rap pan sharply on counter to eliminate air bubbles (oops I did not do this). Bake in middle of oven until a tester comes out with just a few moist crumbs adhering, about 35 minutes. Cool cake in pan on a rack 5 minutes. Turn out onto rack, cool completely and cut into squares.

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