I am not a huge dessert person but I could honestly eat a whole pan of this gingerbread and then lick my fingers to get all of the crumbs up off the counter. I've never had one like it before. It's just the right amount of sweet, spice and warmth. The brown sugar and molasses work their magic and, occasionally, you'll even find a little bite of caramelized crunch. It hits all the right nostalgic notes and is, in a word, delicious. The recipe is from a dear friend's grandmother, ever so neatly typed on an index card with handwritten notes in the margins. That alone should be an indication of how good it is. The first time I ever tried it was at my friend's house during the holidays, leaning on her kitchen island, drinking a lovely glass of wine. She very casually said to me...oh, have a bite of my grandmother's gingerbread...and that was the end of that.
No gingerbread would ever measure up. There was no other gingerbread.
The next holiday season, my friend mentioned that she was making some loaves to give to friends. !?!?! And the wait began.
You have no idea how good she looked, her impossible chicness aside, walking up my back porch steps carrying that little loaf of spicy wonderment. I'm lucky enough to say that that tradition carried on year after year as all good traditions should.
So HUGE thanks to the Drummond family for sharing their recipe with me. Bake some NOW. Even if you don't like gingerbread, your house will smell super dreamy and you can give it away to friends.
grandma allison's gingerbread
slightly adapted from Allison Drummond's recipe
1 1/4 c brown sugar
1 1/4 c molasses
1 1/2 c melted butter
3 3/4 c flour
1 T baking soda
3/4 t baking powder
1 T ground ginger
2 1/2 t cinnamon
1 t ground cloves
1 1/2 c boiling water
Beat together the eggs and sugar. Add the molasses and butter and mix a little more.
Sift all of the dry ingredients together and add to the egg mixture.
Lastly, add the boiling water and mix until it all comes together.
Pour into two 8"x8" or 9" round buttered pans and bake for about 30-40 minutes.
Serve with a little dollop of freshly whipped cream or some creme fraiche.