pumpkin gingerbread with roasted persimmons

Only a few weeks ago, I was in full-fledged pumpkin mania. Pastries, waffles, donuts, fruit butter — I could not get enough gourd. My cravings dropped off considerably after Thanksgiving, but my cupboard still bulged with cans of pumpkin spice and puree. I decided to put them to use and bake a thick, hearty gingerbread, perfect for the tail end of the transition from fall to winter.

If you like molasses, you will love this bread; that darkly rich note sings louder than any other in the recipe. The flavor sent one person in particular over the moon, who raved that it reminded him of his favorite molasses cookie. This bread, however, is barely sweet, making it a fitting accompaniment for your morning cuppa. I highly recommend roasting (maybe even caramelizing?) persimmons for a garnish that’s both decorative and delicious.

Pumpkin gingerbread

Adapted from Simply Recipes

While the original recipe calls for the bread to be baked in a loaf pan, I upped the recipe to make two single-layer cakes for my weekend holiday party circuit.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup + 2 tablespoons (150 g) all purpose flour
  • 1 cups + 2 tablespoons (150 g) whole wheat flour
  • 3/4 teaspoons salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons pumpkin spice
  • 2 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 can (approximately 1 3/4 cup) pumpkin purée
  • 1/4 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup molasses (can be decreased depending on preference)
  • 1.5 tablespoons candied or fresh ginger (optional; I used fresh ginger, grated with my Microplane, though I might use candied ginger for a sweeter cake next time)
  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • 4 1/2 tablespoons water

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. Spray 9″ cake pan with non-stick spray.
  3. In a medium bowl, vigorously whisk together the flours, salt, baking soda, ginger, cinnamon, and nutmeg.
  4. In another bowl, use a wooden spoon to mix together the pumpkin purée, sugars, molasses, ginger (if using), eggs, and water.
  5. Combine the wet and dry ingredients. Stir only until incorporated.
  6. Place the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 50-60 minutes, until a bamboo skewer inserted into the center of the loaf comes out clean. Remove from oven and let cool in the pan for 10 minutes. Gently invert the loaf from the pan (running a knife around the edges if necessary) and let cool on a rack for 30 minutes or more..

Roasted persimmons

Recipe from About.com

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