English Gingerbread – Christmas Baking, part 2

My mum calls it “English Gingerbread” but its ‘real’ name is Chocolate Gingerbread and it’s a recipe by Nigella Lawson. It’s the first of only two of her recipes I’ve ever tried as for some reason I’ve never warmed to her and her TV shows. I did read her column in The Guardian, I think it was, at the time when we still read the paper paper. Anyway, it’s a personal favourite with my mum and so the kids and I made this again this year. I never got round to making it last year even though it was on the list…

The recipe is here. I have reduced the dark muscovado sugar to 80g and found it actually tastes much better. Normally it’s neither here nor there if you have a third less sugar but in this case it enhances the chocolatey-ness of the Gingerbread. What works rather well too is replacing the choc chips with grated chocolate. I suppose that would depend what you’re after: with choc chips you get chunky bits, the grated chocolate just melts into the Gingerbread. This year we used a mixture.

Black treacle and golden syrup are melted with butter and spices:

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It doesn’t look very pretty:

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I bake the Gingerbread in my brownie tin instead of a 30×20 roasting tin. The Gingerbread comes out higher that way and needs 45 minutes in the oven plus ten extra minutes with the oven turned off.

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The Gingerbread is covered in an icing made out of butter, ginger ale and cocoa melted together before whisked together with icing sugar:

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They’re then cut in sticks. Because the Gingerbread rises up so high in the brownie tin and we want small(-ish) bites, I cut them in sticks of about one centimetre thick. My mum says she likes them like that but I just might try the roasting tin version again next year…

Here are a couple of the Gingerbread sticks, the top layer of three or so in a shoe box (we keep Christmas cookies in shoe boxes on the balcony – that keeps them fresh all winter):

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