Saturday, January 24, 2009

Fresh Ginger and Chocolate Gingerbread - Tuesdays with Dorie


Sunday night - A nice cake to make. The process was quite straightforward, except perhaps for the finely chopped ginger root. I tried chopping it in my coffee grinder but it came out too full of liquid, so I just chopped it with a knife. It's stringy and does not respond well to being cut into tiny pieces - I have a feeling that people are going to get little chunks of ginger with string in their portions. I did not use the ginger in syrup - I thought it would be too much.

Of course, I believed I had Grandma's Molasses but it turned out I only had blackstrap so that meant a quick trip to the store about 4 blocks away. After that putting it together went very breezily. I baked it for 40 minutes before testing with a fine knitting needle - it came out with lots of batter on it, so I went for 50minutes. Now I think it might be a bit overdone! Oh well, as long as it tastes good.

I've just sampled a small piece that fell off the bottom of the cake when I turned it out - it does not seem to be very sweet and has a strong molasses (somewhat bitter) taste. Hopefully it will settle down tomorrow before we eat it on Tuesday. Right now I'm thinking of real English Gingerbread Loaf Cake with Lyons Golden Syrup (like my mother and grandmother used to make)- it was sweet and absolutely divine.

Monday evening - Finished the chocolate ganache part. It set very quickly and looks quite glossy. I sprinkled the top with mini crystallized ginger morsels.

I'm really looking forward to it tomorrow, posting day. I'm the "Chooser" this week so here's Dorie's recipe:

Fresh Ginger and Chocolate Gingerbread

For the Cake
2 tablespoons finely chopped peeled fresh ginger
1 tablespoon sugar
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons ground ginger
3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1 stick plus 3 tablespoons (11 tablespoons) unsalted butter, at room temperature
3/4 cup (packed) light brown sugar
3 large eggs
1/2 cup molasses (not blackstrap)
6 ounces bittersweet chocolate - 2 ounces melted and cooled, 4 ounces finely chopped
1 cup buttermilk
1 tablespoon finely chopped stem ginger in syrup (available in Asian markets and supermarkets; optional)

For the Icing
3 ounces bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
1 tablespoon strong coffee
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
3 tablespoons confectioners' sugar

Getting Ready:Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter a 9-inch square baking pan and put it on a baking sheet. (Pan must be a full 9-inch square size or batter will overflow - measure first).

To Make the Cake: Put the fresh ginger and sugar in a small bowl, stir and set aside.

Whisk the flour, baking soda and spices together.

Working with a stand mixer, preferably fitted with a paddle attachment,or with a hand mixer in a large bowl, beat the butter and brown sugar and butter together at medium speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the eggs one at a time, beating for 1 minute after each egg goes in. Don't worry if the mixture looks curdled at this stage. Pour in the molasses and beat until smooth. Reduce the mixer speed to low and add the melted chocolate, along with the sugared ginger. Still on low speed, add the dry ingredients in 3 additions and the buttermilk in 2(begin and end with the dry ingredients),mixing the batter only as much as needed to blend the ingredients. Fold in the chopped chocolate and the ginger in syrup. Pour the batter into the pan.

Bake for about 40 minutes, or until the cake starts to pull away from the sides of the pan and a thin knife inserted into the center comes out clean. Don't be concerned if the cake has domed and cracked-it will settle down as it cools. Transfer the cake to a rack and cool for 10 minutes, then unmold the cake. Turn right side up to cool to room temperature before icing the cake. (The edges of the cake might be quite brown, but don't fret-you can trim them after you ice the cake.)

To Make the Icing: Set a heatproof bowl over a pan of simmering water, put the chocolate and coffee in the bowl, and stir occasionally until the chocolate is melted. Remove the bowl and, using a small whisk, stir in the butter one tablespoon at a time. Sift the confectioners' sugar over the chocolate and stir in. Transfer the bowl to a counter and let the icing sit for about 10 minutes.

Put the gingerbread, still on the rack, on a piece of wax paper or foil (the drip catcher). Pour the icing onto the center of the cake and use a long metal spatula to spread the icing evenly over the top. Allow the icing to set for 30 minutes (you can hurry it along by chilling the cake briefly). If the edges of the cake are overbaked, now is the time to trim them. Then cut the gingerbread into 9 even pieces.

47 comments:

dorie said...

I'm so glad you chose this recipe and I love the little ginger pieces you sprinkled over the ganache.

Pamela said...

Thanks for choosing this one. I probably would have never even given this one a second look and I am so glad I made it. Quite yummy! Hope you enjoyed it, too!

LyB said...

Really great choice, Heather. I might not have chosen it myself but I really liked it. Yours looks great! :)

steph- whisk/spoon said...

this cake was delicious, and just right for cold weather--thanks for the pick! the way i always deal with fresh ginger is to grate it with a microplane...makes it into a nice paste with no strings.

Natalie said...

great choice- thank you! unexpectedly delicious.

Beth said...

Good choice! I really liked it and will totally add it to my regular baking list :-)

SiHaN said...

i'm so glad you chose this recipe. Went down perfectly well with my relatives. Just in time for the chinese new year as well!

Lael said...

This is a great looking recipe. I'm so glad I've got Dorie's book in my small cookbook collection! Your talk of Lyons Golden Syrup also brings back good memories for me.

Jodie said...

Thanks for the great pick! These were tasty!

Karen said...

Great choice!! We loved this recipe!

Secret Server said...

Thank you for choosing this. It was wonderful. I love your crystallized ginger on top. When I make this again, I will try that.

joanna said...

Your cake looks so pretty! I especially like the look of the ginger on top.
Good recipe choice that I, too, would have passed right by - but it was popular in my house!

Gabe's Girl said...

Your cake looks divine. Isn't it amazing how long 4 blocks can seem when all you need is one thing? Have a wonderful day. I am sure your gingerbread is going to be amazing!

elizabeth said...

Thanks for a great choice! And I do love the sprinkles on top of your cake. :)

chocolatechic said...

This was such a great recipe.

Thanks for such a wonderful pick.

vibi said...

Thank you so much Heather, for choosing this recipe for us this week, it was fantastic!
Yours looks pretty darn good! ...and I'm sure, was just as yummy as mine!

Kimberly Johnson said...

Wonderful choice this week Heather! Your gingerbread looks great especially with the ginger on top!

spike. said...

What a great choice! I loved this recipe and can't wait to make it again

pinkstripes said...

Thank you, thank you, thank you for selecting this recipe. it's one I would have never picked and I absolutely loved it. It was so good and delicious.

I subbed golden syrup for the molasses and it was out of this world.

Thanks again!!

Flourchild said...

Yours looks great. Im glad you picked it!

Leslie said...

Great choice! I love it when pieces of cake fall off and have to be eaten, don't you?! Thanks for picking for us this week!

kim said...

thanks for a wonderful recipe choice! yours looks great, hope you enjoyed the final product :)

Carol Peterman said...

I especially love when people pick recipes that I have passed over time and time again, and they turn out to be spectacularly tasty! I loved this, thanks! I love that it isn't very sweet, so I hope it tastes good to you once you try it.

TourGuideJenn said...

Like so many others, I would have passed right by this recipe if not for your pick. I really liked it, so I'm glad you picked it. Love the decoration on top of yours!

dharmagirl said...

thanks for choosing this recipe, heather! it was simple and satisfying!

G in Berlin said...

What a great choice. I didn't think I would like it at all but I really like it very much. Both my classmates and my husband's work colleagues will be unknowingly thanking you tomorrow as this cake is too good to keep around (I would eat too much!). I loved the little chunks of ginger root and might double it next time, but I also found that it completely dissolved in the sugar during the time I had set it aside to macerate. I was very surprised. Next time I will make it all in mini-loafs and freeze them.

Cooking for Comfort by Jennifer said...

A million thank you's for choosing this recipe...something I never would have chosen for myself. I don't care for fresh ginger, but I used the ground spices and it was HEAVEN ON A PLATE...

You did a spectacular job! Thanks again!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Engineer Baker said...

What an awesome pick! When I was deciding what to pick, my boyfriend tried to get me to pick this cake - he got all of it this time :) And it is seriously 100x better the next day. Which is saying a lot since it's so tasty the first day!

Tracey said...

Thanks for your pick! I'm not a huge gingerbread fan but this cake was yummy!

wildthayn said...

Great choice!! I love this recipe!! Yours looks great too!

margot said...

The crystallized ginger on top makes the cake look extra yummy! A nice winter recipe that I never would have tried myself.

Di said...

Great pick this week, Heather! I thought mine wasn't done yet, either, but then I realized I hit some of the of chocolate pieces in the batter. =) And a tip for the ginger--I grated it with my microplane grater, so it was very fine and not at all stringy. Just cut back on the amount if you do that, since it's quite strong.

farah said...

Good choice! Thanks for choosing this. It wasn't hard to make and its very, very good :)

Maria said...

Sounds and looks like a delish combination of flavours! Great choice.

Maria
x

Lillian said...

Thanks for choosing this recipe -- I would never have chosen it myself, and we loved it!

Dragon said...

Chocolate and ginger are perfect together.

Gigi said...

looks delish! i wish i could have a huge slice!

Jess said...

Thank you for picking this one - I needed a gingerbread fix! The candied ginger on top is a pretty addition. I also had the underdone-to-overdone issue, but the flavors were great together.

Linda said...

A great pick...I wouldn't have made this otherwise, and everyone loved it!

I used a microplane to grate the ginger and would definitely recommend the investment...it will save you the frustration of chopping ginger.

TeaLady said...

Thanks for this choice. It was really good. I chopped my ginger and while it had a little 'fiber' in it it seemed to disappear in the cake itself. Yummy!

Jules Someone said...

Mmmmm. What a great choice! We loved it.

Erin said...

It looks wonderful! I didn't get to make it yet, but I'm hoping to soon because everyone has given it such rave reviews!

AmyRuth said...

Thank you for choosing gingerbread, which I like. I am looking forward to making it again in the future with golden syrup and topping it with powdered sugar for an Amy style "playing around." I think the candied ginger on top is really a nice touch.
AmyRuth

Rosie said...

I adore gingerbread and this one looks excellent :)
Rosie x

Judy said...

Thanks for choosing the gingerbread. I really loved the addition of the icing, and I'm still nibbling away at it.

Rosa's Yummy Yums said...

Your cake looks delicious! That's a recipe I'll have to try very soon...

Cheers,

Rosa

Jaime said...

great job, my hubby loved this cake!