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Baking Gingerbread


Well, I made some gingerbread.

I got it into my head that I wanted to make some gingerbread, so I got some molasses at the grocery store and assumed I had everything else I needed, what with Thanksgiving pie making and all.

Then I went to make it and - no flour.

How do you run out of flour? Isn't that one of those things that's just automagically there? I guess not. So we stopped at the store after lunch to get a bag of flour and ended up getting a dozen other things too, including some chopped pecans because I also want to make a Chocolate Angel Pie, one of my Mom's specialties.

Anyway, the next task was to decide which recipe I wanted to use. My Gramma has a recipe that she jotted down in her 1912 Fannie Merritt Farmer Boston Cooking School cook book, but it was really only a list of ingredients. No directions, oven temperature, or cook time. The actual printed recipe in the book was also missing the oven temperature, but that's because stoves in 1912 did not have temperature controls for the oven!

I looked at a few other recipes and finally landed on one from the good old Joy of Cooking. It was not as easy as I thought it would be - sift dry stuff in one bowl, melt butter, beat egg and sugar and butter in another bowl, mix liquids in yet another bowl, then alternate mixing dry and wet into the butter-egg-sugar. The liquids were a half cup of honey, a half cup of light molasses, and a cup of hot water. But I bought dark molasses, because what's the point of light molasses, and we only had a quarter cup of honey, so I used extra molasses.

I got all of the dry ingredients into the sifter and then realized that I'd put in an extra half-teaspoon of baking soda. Well, it's rather difficult to separate out baking soda from flour, salt, and spices, so bah humbug. Then, just as I was ready to pour the batter in the pan, I noticed that nice wee saucepan of melted butter that I forgot to beat with the egg and sugar.

Oh well - I mixed it in anyway, poured it in the pan, and baked it.

It came out quite nicely! It's quite tall - I guess that's the extra baking soda. I was afraid that it would be too - molassessy - or spicy, or something. But it's quite tasty!

This gives me hope for the Chocolate Angel Pie. I'll report back.