Spicy Banana Gingerbread
Ultra ripe bananas add another flavor dimension to this dark, very gingery
bread and help keep it moist for days. The secret to great gingerbread is using
fresh spices, so if you can't remember the last time you replaced yours, it's
probably a good idea to buy new ones.
1 (2-inch long) piece fresh gingerroot, peeled and finely chopped
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup blackstrap molasses
3/4 cup packed dark brown sugar
1 large egg
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1/2 cup mashed very ripe banana (about 1 1/4 bananas)
Confectioners' sugar for dusting
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour an 8-inch square baking
2. Bring 1/2 cup of water and the gingerroot to a boil in a small saucepan.
Remove from heat, cover and allow to steep 10 minutes. Strain and set aside;
3. Beat the butter, molasses, and brown sugar in a large bowl with an electric
mixer until very creamy.
Beat in the egg. In a separate bowl, stir together the flour, baking powder,
baking soda, salt, ground ginger, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Stir together the banana
and ginger water, and with the mixer on low speed, gradually add it to the
butter mixture along with the dry ingredients, mixing until just blended.
4. Scrape the batter into the prepared pan and bake 35 to 40 minutes, or until a
wooden skewer inserted in the center comes out clean. Place pan on a rack to
cool completely. Sprinkle the top with confectioners' sugar, and slice into 9
even squares. Serve warm or at room temperature.
Makes one 8-inch square cake with nine 2 1/2-inch squares.