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January 27, 2013

Caribbean gingerbread recipe

Real Caribbean gingerbread, sticky and spicy!

When my husband Ted, Cousin Martin and I visited Trinidad many years ago, we spent a week as houseguests of Kathleen, who lived in Arima, an Afro-Caribbean community in the center of the island. An amazing cook, she introduced us to all of the Trinidadian specialty dishes, washed down with her potent homemade ginger beer. It was the first time I experienced ginger in such a vibrant form, and I've never forgotten that taste. True Caribbean gingerbread overflows with the strong flavors of molasses and fresh ginger root, making it both sticky and spicy, and in no way resembles the gingerbread made from a box mix. I'm not usually drawn to dishes with a strong ginger flavor, but I ate a large square of this gingerbread. And then I ate another, and a third one after that, and Ted did, too. Kathleen would approve.

Caribbean gingerbread with molasses and fresh ginger, on The Perfect Pantry.

Caribbean gingerbread

From the pantry, you'll need: molasses, granulated sugar, butter, all-purpose unbleached flour, baking powder, kosher salt, nutmeg, fresh ginger root, egg, cooking spray.

From Caribbean Cooking, this recipe makes 1 9-inch pan (12-15 pieces).

Ingredients

1/2 cup molasses
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
1/2 cup hot water
2 cups all-purpose unbleached flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp ground nutmeg
2 tsp grated fresh ginger root or ginger paste
1 large egg, beaten
Cooking spray

Directions

Preheat oven to 300°F. Spray a 9-inch square pan with cooking spray, then line it with waxed paper so the paper comes up over the sides of the pan (you'll need the paper to get the gingerbread out, so don't skip this step).

In a medium sauce pan over low heat, gently heat molasses, sugar and butter. Stir in the hot water, and set the pan aside.

In a medium bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, salt and nutmeg. Stir in the fresh ginger or ginger paste, then the beaten egg. Add the molasses liquid, stir to combine, and pour into the prepared pan.

Bake at 300F for 1 hour, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Remove the pan from the oven and set on a wire rack to cool for at least 30 minutes (even though it will be hard to wait that long).

Carefully lift the edges of the wax paper and slide the gingerbread out of the pan onto the wire rack. Let cool completely; as it cools, the top will become more crunchy, while the inside will remain moist.

Cut into squares and serve. Top with whipped cream or vanilla ice cream, if you wish.

[Printer-friendly recipe.]


More recipes in The Perfect Pantry:
Gingerbread waffles
Gingerbread cookies
Kicked-up gingerbread
Chewy molasses spice cookies

Other recipes that use these pantry ingredients:
Ginger sandwich cookies with lemon cream filling, from Sass & Veracity
Pumpkin spice muffins with molasses glaze, from What We're Eating
Gingerbread biscotti with apricots, from Cooking On the Side
Pumpkin gingersnap cookies, from Two Peas & Their Pod
Soft dark chocolate gingerbread cookies, from White on Rice Couple

Disclosure: The Perfect Pantry earns a few pennies on books purchased through the Amazon.com links in this post.

Comments

I adore gingerbread! This super gingery Caribbean version sounds great, Lydia. And, of course, it's a prime recipe to re-make gluten free. ;-) Adding it to my "must convert" list!

Shirley

I love gingerbread, well, anything with molasses actually. Must try this version.

I'm jealous that you went to Trinidad, and intrigued by this recipe.

Shirley, I'm always so interested in your gluten-free remakes. Hope this one is easy.

Pattypro, be prepared for sticky goodness. We demolished this pan of gingerbread in am embarrassingly short time.

Kalyn, our homestay with Kathleen's family gave us real insight into the Trinidad way of life. It was an extraordinary experience.

oh no I have not.
but I sure do want to now!
I LOVE anything with fresh ginger; I swear my body is always craving it.

Oh, my! This sounds amazing. It has been such a cold, yucky day - I NEED to make this!

Vanillasugar, Judy: I know you will both adore this gingerbread. It's perfect for the foul weather we're having in the Northeast today.

I like everything gingerbread. How interesting that the fresh ginger is used, I guess that makes a difference..

I've never tried food from Trinidad - love the use of ginger though so I know I'd love this version of gingerbread.

Medeja, it makes a big difference in flavor and texture. Try it!

Jeanette, I realized that I have a number of recipes from our visit to Trinidad that I've never shared on the blog, so they'll be appearing now from time to time. We loved the food there, and were so fortunate to stay with a woman who was a great cook.

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About The Perfect Pantry®

  • My name is Lydia Walshin. From my log house kitchen in rural northwest Rhode Island, I share recipes that use what we keep in our pantries, the usual and not-so-usual ingredients that spice up our lives.

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