Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Tuesdays with Dorie: Chocolate Gingerbread Cake (a.k.a. Wednesdays with Dorie in Babette Feasts Land

It was TOO hot last night in S. Florida to turn on the oven. Everyone would have complained.

So. I had everything set up to go this morning. Was up early and got my mise en place ready: chopped ginger, measured out dry ingredients, chopped chocolate, melted some for batter...Ready for G to walk out the door so I could fire up the oven without sending him into sweating misery.

Luckily I had just enough fresh ginger...A bit shriveled, but it worked. I cut off two knobs that sprouted and have asked at WineLoversPage.com Kitchen forum if I can plant it and grow ginger...how cool would that be?

I digress.

This goes together very easily...and of course, for those of you who have stuck with me through oh-so-many weeks of baking you'll know I occasionally (heh) mess up. And even as I am typing this, I think I forgot the extra couple of tablespoons of butter...or did I? We shall see..If I have one complaint about these recipes it is that so many of them are 1 stick plus 3 tablespoons of butter. Can't we just have the stick? Well, readers, we shall see, because my chocolate gingerbread cake has just one stick...

Also, I wonder why not blackstrap molasses? Because I had two things of molasses in my cupboard, one from the local Publix, the other a really special molasses I brought back from Barbados' Nicholas Abby (FABULOUS place)...and yes, they were both blackstrap. So I played with the recipe again..I had to use what I had, but I used a bit less in case the flavor was overwhelming. (Why not blackstrap, Dorie?)

So. Aside from my standard errors, I am finally understanding some of the science of baking...the texture of this cake will be nice and light and you can see that in the batter--it's the buttermilk reacting with the baking soda. Cool.
Dorie says pour batter into cake pan, but this isn't pourable for me...I scrape batter into prepared 8x8 and another mini loaf pan. (Dorie weighs in on the TWD homepage about the need for a true 9x9--don't have that in my cupboard...so I follow her advice and make the extra mini loaf...how nice for sharing...)

The loaf has come out and looks lovely. Just waiting on the square. I'll let that cool and glaze it later...

Stay tuned.
Mmm. The house smells GREAT--these are some of my favorite flavors, the warm spices, chocolate and ginger...I just know this is going to be a winner...But those ovens, man, is it ever hot in here...I hope a cold front moves in soon.

The cakes came out of the pans so nicely...I always use parchment no matter what..no use chancing clumps staying in the pan...Yum. Icing these after lunch.

Ooh..nice glossy icing..yummm.

This is a keeper. It's not fussy and it's delicious...warm flavors of those spices and the ginger combine perfectly with the rich chocolate...

Happy Tuesdays with Dorie, all. Er...Wednesdays with Dorie (anyone else in my group?)

2 comments:

Jules Someone said...

Too hot to bake? You're killing me. Nice cake!

Barbara said...

Too hot to bake? Excuse me while I have a "winter in Wisconsin" moment...

Better now. Your cake looks lovely!

Blackstrap molasses is stronger in flavor, less sweet, and has more bitter overtones. But hey, if you like it, go for it!