We have been hibernating, a weekend spent mostly at home – drinking tea, eating gingerbread, decorating for Christmas and wrapping gifts. The snow outside is melting into slushy puddles, and dripping from branches and rooftops, but we have been warned that more may be on the way.
I like winter – the comfortable indoor warmth, blankets, red cheeks and noses from playing outside in the cold. I like winter food too, the roasted root vegetables, red meat, baking and the smell of warm spices. Coming in from the cold and cuddling up with a hot cup of tea and some warm sticky gingerbread, or even just hanging out in pajamas all day.
This gingerbread is delicious. It’s not the kind you want to be building gingerbread houses with though, it’s gooey and sticky but pretty perfect for enjoying on the chilly days leading up to Christmas. You can frost it if you like, but I prefer it mostly plain, with a dusting of powdered sugar.
Modified from a recipe by Nigella Lawson, thanks to my mum, and converted into American Measurements by me. I’m not very good at converting, but I baked it myself with the converted measurements and it came out just fine.
*Note: Golden Syrup is a mostly British thing, although it should be available to buy in the States at stores like Wholefoods. It is similar to corn syrup except has a thicker consistency and is more like honey in colour. Lyles is the name of the British brand, although I have been told that there are perhaps two other brands in the States – King Brand Syrup and Steen’s.
2/3 cups butter
7oz Golden Syrup *See note above
4.5oz Dark Brown Sugar
2 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp allspice
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp baking soda, disolved in 2 tbsp warm water
1 cup full fat milk
2 eggs, lightly beaten
3 cups unbleached all purpose flour
Preheat oven to 325F. Line two loaf pans with parchment paper.
In a saucepan over a low heat, mix together and melt the butter, sugar, golden syrup, molasses and spices.
Take off the heat and add the milks, eggs and dissolved baking soda along with its water.
Measure the flour into a bowl and pour in the liquid ingredients, beating until well mixed. You can do this by hand quite easily, or with an electric mixer. The batter will be very liquid, but don’t worry as that is what will make it sticky later.
Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pans and bake for around 45 minutes, until risen and firm on top. Try not to over cook, it will carry on cooking as it cools.
Transfer the tin to a wire rack and let it cool in the tin before turning out and slicing.
The gingerbread can be made up to two weeks ahead and stored, loosely wrapped in baking parchment in an airtight container.