Ginger Bread Cake - Ode to Laurie Colwin's recipe
Laurie Colwin's words never fail to lift my spirit and bring a smile on my lips. Do I cook her recipes often?- Definitely not! I read her not for her recipes, but for the stories accompanying each of her dishes. Her narration is so simple and unpretentious that it almost feels like she is sitting across from me and we are holding a conversation in my own little kitchen! This morning I woke up with an innate need to bake and all I could dream of, in the last few moments before wakefulness, was Laurie Colwin's famous Ginger Bread Cake.
Baking soothes me and off late I haven't been quite myself. Of course, it appears everything is normal on the surface but there is this nagging ache within that me, that can't be pinpointed. Its easy to take care of physical pain but when the spirit is low, I'm at a loss. When I look around the world at large, it is facile to slip into a dark hole, to distract myself- I bake. Baking has a certain calming effect- the measuring, the whipping, the folding of the simple ingredients, and the entire frivolity of the act, uplifts me from my morse emotions. Laurie's ginger bread does just that. The simplicity and the hominess of the dish, takes me back to my childhood days of innocence, or when the world felt like a comforting space.
This recipe of Ginger Bread Cake is from her second book- More Home Cooking. It is effortless, without any fuss, and rather easy. It calls for melted butter, which unburdens the whole act of creaming the butter and sugar, very much in the signature Laurie way of easing work in the kitchen. I mean, she was someone who would cook without any fancy gadgets, embracing failures and kitchen misfortunes; egging one to have fun and joy while cooking. There isn't anything uptight about her recipes that aims only perfection. I love Laurie because she encourages you to embrace the mundane and yet be cool to be a Home Cook. I mean, I don't cook to understand the science behind all the dishes but I cook and stand infront of my stove because of the sheer joy I derive and the happiness I can share through my food. Coming back to the recipe, the original recipe calls for Steen's Cane Syrup, but of course I replace it with molasses and I'm sure that Laurie will probably smile. I have no access to Steen's Cane Syrup here in a small city in the North East of India, but I do have access to some lovely, locally produced molasses. The final cake is not very sweet or either too moist, with notes of ginger and cinnamon. And while the cake is baking, the fragrance will fill the entire home and lift your spirits, which is precisely why I baked this cake today.
The Batter is not pouring consistency, but thats just fine.
Sharing one of favorite recipe of Ginger Bread Cake, Laurie's recipe of course.
Forewarning - You can't stop with one slice only!
If you try this recipe, we would love to hear your feedback.
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