Old-fashioned Gingerbread!

Yesterday I had another spontaneous baking day that changed originally planned chocolate chunk cookies to something I have been wanting to bake in ages.  Thats right! Old-fashioned gingerbread! I have no idea why I want to make gingerbread so much, maybe its because of I love gingerbread cookies so much.  So this sounds like something tasty to experiment or maybe its just to bring some (really) early Christmas baking into the house.  I don’t know the reason, I did it! I finally made gingerbread and it turned out pretty good!

Yet another recipe from 500 Cookies, Biscuits & Bakes by Catherine Atkinson



1 tbsp vinegar

3/4 cup milk

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

2 tsp baking powder

1/4 tsp baking soda

pinch of salt

2 tsp ground ginger

1 tsp ground cinnamon

1/4 tsp ground cloves

1/2 cup butter, at room temperature

generous 1/2 cup caster sugar

1 egg, at room temperature

3/4 cup molasses

whipped cream, for serving

chopped preserved stem ginger, for decorating


How to make it:

1. Preheat the oven to 350F.  Line an 8in square cake pan with baking parchment and grease the parchment and the sides of the pan.

2. Add the vinegar to the milk in a small bowl and set aside.

3. In another mixing bowl, sift all the dry ingredients, except the caster sugar, together three times and set aside

4. In a bowl, beat together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.  Beat in the egg until well combined.  Stir in the molasses, stirring well.

5. Fold in the dry ingredients in four batches, alternating with the milk.  Mix only enough to blend.

6.  Pour the mixture into the prepared pan and bake for 45-50 minutes, until firm to the touch.  Cut the gingerbread into squares and serve warm with whipped cream.  Decorate with preserved stem ginger.


This recipe turned out pretty well.  It wasn’t too sweet either.  I believe that it should have been more firm, but it could be because instead of milk and vinegar reacting together, I could only use water.  You can also decorate it like it says with whipped cream but since my mom isn’t a big fan of that, I decided to let that go as well.  Without any toppings, I can tell you that it still tastes pretty good, so its really a preference.

I will definitely consider making some of this for Christmas when December comes around.  Maybe its time to start trying out some new recipes for Christmas baking.

Do you think its too early? Its just baking, right?



Banana Gingerbread Slices

This weekend, my friend had a monthly girls’ lunch at her new place.  I decided to make her a little something.  After some thought, I had decided to make my Traditional Sugar Cookies.  Unfortunately, they decided to not work according to plan and the dough needed to be in the fridge to harden a while longer.  In a hurry, I flipped through my cookbook quickly and looked for something else and I landed on Banana Gingerbread Slices.  I’ve never made slices and had no idea what texture they are supposed to be but if its anything I always have sitting around at my place (thanks to doing intense sports aka dragonboat), its bananas.  Being really into baked goods with ginger, I had a lot of that sitting in my tin of spices, this was the perfect recipe.

They were incredibly easy to make and the ingredient portions were right on (unlike the various times with making cookies).  It didn’t particularly take long to make and while it was in the oven, the only reason it felt eternities was about 10-15 minutes later, it started smelling so delicious.

Banana Gingerbread Slices (Recipe from Cookies, Biscuits and Bakes 500 by Catherine Atkinson)

Makes 20


2 1/2 cups all purpose flour

1 tsp baking soda

4 tsp ground ginger

2 tsp mixed spice (apple pie spice)

2/3 cup soft light brown sugar

4 tbsp sunflower oil

2 tbsp molasses

2 tbsp malt extract

2 eggs

4 tbsp orange juice

3 ripe bananas

2/3 cup raisins

1. Preheat the oven to 350F.  Lightly grease and line a 28x18cm/11x7in. shallow baking tin (pan).

2. Sift the flour, baking soda, and spices into mixing bowl.  Place the sugar in the sieve (strainer) over the bowl, add some of the flour mixture and rub through with a spoon

3. Make a well in the centre in the dry ingredients.  Add the oil, molasses, malt extract, eggs and juice.  Mix thoroughly.

4. Mash the bananas on a plate.  Add the raisins to the gingerbread mixture, then mix in the mashed bananas.

5. Scrape the mixture into the prepared baking tin.  Bake for about 35-40 minutes, or until the centre of the gingerbread springs back when lightly pressed.

6. Leave to cool for 5 minutes, then turn out on to a wire rack to cool completely.  Cut into 20 slices to serve.

As usual, I made some changes to this recipe.  I replaced mixed spice to cinnamon; sunflower oil to vegetable oil; malt extract to vanilla extract; orange juice to water and raisins to dried cranberries.  That didn’t make much of a difference as it still tasted really delicious.  It wasn’t too dry and the fruits was very apparent in the taste in each slice.  Definitely pleased with the results.  I usually worry about any with bananas because it could mean that the bananas cover up a lot of the other taste.  This one has a really nice balance between gingerbread and banana.  The dried cranberries gave it a little chewy sensation which made it a better texture.

Here’s what it looked like after cut into pieces to get an idea of the texture.

Pretty good looking, eh? Tempted? Go ahead and give it a shot!