Sunday, January 23, 2011

Classic Gingerbread with Vanilla Bean Glaze

     I've been wanting to make gingerbread for a long time!  I've always absolutely loved gingerbread boy cookies (so much that my kitchen turns into a gingerbread house at Christmas!), and so naturally I knew I would love old fashioned gingerbread.  This recipe came from one of my favorite cookbooks, Gooseberry Patch's Fall Family & Friends Cookbook!  I love these Gooseberry cookbooks for their simply delicious recipes, cute illustrations, and fun tips and suggestions. I usually get them as gifts from my Mom or sister...thank you!! This is a very easy recipe!  I've had friends tell me that they could never make bread, but "quick breads" like this one are fast and easy to make--only about 10-15 minutes to put together! All you do for this recipe is to combine everything in one bowl, mix well, pour in the pan and you're ready to bake! I added the vanilla bean glaze. It is only three simple ingredients, and you can even play with that if you like.  You can substitute the vanilla with maple syrup for a maple glaze that would be delicious with the gingerbread, or leave the glaze off for a healthier version.  Either way, this recipe is one you will love for breakfast or dessert!  

     Gingerbread has great flavors that are perfect for the long winter months.  With heartwarming ingredients like molasses, ginger, cloves, and cinnamon I can't help but smile while baking this bread!  You will look like Martha Stewart when you take this beautiful loaf out of the oven along with the wafting aroma of sugar and spice!  On the next snow day, surprise your family with a new treat when they wake up with this Classic Gingerbread!

Classic Gingerbread with Vanilla Bean Glaze

1/2 c. sugar
1 c. molasses
1/2 c. butter, room temperature
1 t. ginger
1 t. ground cloves 
1 t. cinnamon
2 t. baking soda
1 c. boiling water
2 1/2 c. all-purpose flour
2 eggs, beaten

Mix all the ingredients together; pour into a greased and floured 9"x5" loaf pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 40 minutes. Poke holes in the bread using a toothpick or fork and pour glaze all over.  Makes one loaf.

Vanilla Bean Glaze

Mix powdered sugar with enough water or milk for a thick glaze consistency.  (Maybe about 1 Tbsp. liquid to 1 cup powdered sugar, or so.  I don't really measure but just mix till I get the right consistency.) Add about 1 tsp of vanilla bean paste or vanilla extract. Whisk all together, well.  

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