If you've been reading this blog for any length of time [ed. note: THANK you!], you've likely noticed that ginger is one of my favorites. Those warm, spicy flavors are irresistible to me year-round, but especially during the holidays.
A few days ago, I started brainstorming gingerbread ideas trying to think of something that had those great holiday flavors, but with a bit of a twist. I was doing this thing that I do before I bake, where I bop around the kitchen, opening up cabinets and staring. Eugene, who had just finished cleaning said kitchen after dinner, walked in, saw me, and made that "no, please no!" face that he sometimes gets when he sees that I'm about to dirty up a bunch of bowls and dishes again.
So figured I ought to stick with something simple and one-bowl-ish.
favorite basic cornbread recipe and then doctor it up with fresh fruit, different spices, herbs--really just about anything I find!
In this recipe, I added traditional gingerbread flavors and spices to create the perfect hybrid. It's a little nutty and crumbly (like cornbread), but very moist, dark, and beautifully spiced (like gingerbread). It's sweet, but not very, so it's perfect as a holiday side dish, or for breakfast with a bit of good, soft butter.
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Makes 12 squares
1 cup yellow cornmeal
1 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup tightly packed dark brown sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
1 teaspoon Kosher salt
1 large egg, beaten
1/4 cup molasses
1 cup buttermilk
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1/3 cup vegetable or olive oil
Preheat your oven to 400 degrees and position the rack right in the center. Butter and flour an 8" x 2" square baking pan and set aside.
In a large bowl or base of a mixer, mix the cornmeal, flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, ginger, cinnamon, coves, and salt until evenly combined. Add the egg, molasses, buttermilk, vanilla, and olive, and mix until the batter is smooth and completely combined.
Pour into the prepared baking pan and smooth out on top. Bake approximately 20 to 25 minutes, or until a tester inserted into the center comes out clean. Let cool 10 minutes in pan, then turn out onto a cooling rack.