Food of the Month, December 2011: Gingerbread Cake

I usually don’t think about making gingerbread until December, probably because I associate it so closely with Christmas. Gingerbread cookies are so cheerful and happy and I love gingerbread houses, even though I’m not very good at making them.

If you ever get the chance, check out the national gingerbread house display at the Grove Park Inn in Asheville, N.C. The winning entries will be featured December 23rd on ABC’s Good Morning America. What a treat for young and old alike! I’ve been lucky to see this dispay a few times, and am consistently amazed at the talent of the artists. The pictures of gingerbread houses in this post are from the competition in 2010.

Since the holidays are such a busy time for most people, here is a great recipe for an easy-to-assemble gingerbread cake that you don’t have to take the time to decorate. The sour cream and molasses make it wonderfully moist. Beware of the smells emanating from your kitchen while this is baking – you’ll be craving this cake before it’s time to come out of the oven!

Ingredients

  • ½ cup butter
  • ½ cup sugar
  • ½ cup light brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ cup molasses
  • ½ cup sour cream
  • 1 ½ cups all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 ½ teaspoons ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon orange rind

Preparation

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour a 9-inch square pan.

Cream the butter, add the sugars and mix well. Add the eggs and blend until smooth. Add the molasses and sour cream and beat for a minute or so, until completely blended.

Add the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, ginger, cinnamon and orange rind and mix until smooth.

Pour the batter into the prepared pan.

Bake for 30 minutes, until a toothpick stuck in the middle of the cake comes out clean.

Serve this plain with applesauce on the side or top with your favorite whipped topping (or both!)

Bon appétit!

Eat, drink and be merry!

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