Moosehead Gingerbread

If you like gingerbread with character, this is it. The molasses, coffee, and generous quantity and assortment of spices produce a moist, fragrant, deep brown cake. Try it with homemade applesauce or warm apricot jam. I've adapted the recipe from Maida Heatter, Book of Great Desserts, Knopf, 1975.


Preheat oven to 375° F. Butter or Pam a 9 inch square pan. (This can be doubled or otherwise increased to fit 2 9-inch rounds or a bundt pan).
Sift together flour, soda, salt, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, mustard, and pepper. Cream butter and sugar for 1-2 minutes. Beat in eggs, 1 at a time. Add molasses. Beat until smooth. On low speed, alternately add dry ingredients and coffee (still a bit hot), beginning and ending with dry ingredients. Beat until smooth. Pour into prepared pan(s). Bake 35 minutes or until the top springs back. Cool 10 minutes in pan. Remove to plate, and serve with apricot jam or applesauce.
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