Sunday, December 19, 2010

Whole Wheat Gingerbread Squares

Although I'm actually not a big fan of Christmas, I am a fan of many of the foods that appear this time of year, the ginger-based confections (gingersnaps, gingerbread, etc.) being among them. I adore ginger and will eat crystallized ginger by the (small) handful if I have it around. I was in the mood for a slightly sweet treat and this super quick and moderately healthy version of gingerbread was just the ticket.

I used molasses, as is typical for most gingerbread recipes, but I have a jar of local Rollings Meadows sorghum that I'd like to try substituting for the molasses the next time I make this recipe. There three grades of molasses-mild, dark, and blackstrap, all of which may be sulfured or unsulfured-and you can use any you like in this recipe. Blackstrap molasses comes from the third boiling and concentration of molasses and has the lowest sugar concentration (and calories) of the three varieties. It is also often sold as a health supplement because of its high potassium, calcium, magnesium, and iron content, so you may want to go that direction for a healthier, but less sweet gingerbread cake.

Whole Wheat Gingerbread Squares
adapted from Cooking Light
makes one 9-inch square cake

1 1/4 cups whole wheat pastry flour
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup turbinado sugar
1/2 cup low-fat buttermilk
1/2 cup molasses
1/3 cup butter, melted
1 large egg, lightly beaten
Cooking spray
1 tablespoon powdered sugar

1. Preheat oven to 350° and spray a 9-inch square baking pan with cooking spray.

2. Combine flour, ginger, cinnamon, and baking soda in a medium bowl, stirring to thoroughly combine.

3. Combine sugar, buttermilk, molasses, butter, and egg in a large bowl, stirring with a whisk. Stir in flour mixture.

4. Pour batter into baking pan and bake at 350° for 18 to 25 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pan on a wire rack. Sprinkle gingerbread with powdered sugar.

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