- 1 cup dark molasses (not blackstrap)
- 1 cup stout (I used an oatmeal stout; you could use Guinness or whatever you want. Or probably ginger ale or another soda, if you don’t want to use alcohol.)
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1½ teaspoons baking powder
- 2 tablespoons ground ginger
- 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon coriander
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon cardamom
- ¼ teaspoon ground cloves
- ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
- a few grinds of black pepper
- 3 large eggs
- 1 cup brown sugar (I used light; you can use whatever)
- 1 cup white sugar
- ¾ cup vegetable oil
- 1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
- 2–3 tablespoons chopped crystalized ginger (if you desire. I like the way it sinks to the bottom of the bundt pan and makes the top nice and moist after it’s baked.)
For The Daniel
- 2 cups sugar
- 1¼ cup heavy cream
- ¼ cup unsalted butter
- 2 tablespoons maple syrup
- 1 tablespoon whiskey
- 1 teaspoon salt (or more, if you like your caramel sauce ultra-salty)
- However many pecans you want, toasted
- Some maple syrup
For The Rex
- A half-pint of heavy whipping cream (or more if you want … more whipped cream. But this makes a lot. I am extremely exact. Practically a scientist.)
- 2 tablespoons elderflower liqueur (I use St-Germain and will never touch another, but you can use whatevs.)
For The Roan
- 1 ripe pear
- Cheese of choice
- Cayenne pepper
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Apply some non-stick agent to your pan. Butter, other shortening, et cetera. I used cooking spray and it worked great—no stickage. If you use butter or shortening, make sure to also dust with flour and tap out excess to avoid losing the top of your cake to the pan.
- In a large saucepan, bring molasses and stout to a boil, then remove from the heat, whisk in your baking soda, and cool to room temperature. Note: don’t bring to a boil by putting the lid on your pan and then going and doing other things. This will result in a bubbling over that resembles the Exxon Valdez oil spill all over your stovetop. Not that I’d know. Because I’d never do that. Nope.
- Sift together flour and spices in a large bowl. In another large bowl whisk together eggs and sugars. Whisk in oil and fresh ginger. Whisk in cooled molasses and stout mixture. (It doesn’t have to be super cool, you just don’t want residual heat to cook your egg.) Add wet ingredients to flour mixture and whisk together until just combined. Be gentle; you don’t want to overmix.
- Pour batter into bundt pan (or loaf pans or unicorn novelty pans or whatever the heck you’re using—just know that your batter will rise so it shouldn’t fill your unicorn pan more than ¾ of the way or so, otherwise you’ll have another oil spill in the oven. And this one will catch on fire. And then you’ll have to clean the oven. And let’s be honest, no one ever does that, so really you’ll have to live with your oven smoking the next ten times you use it as it burns off the excess of your excess. Actually, to be safe, just put your pan on a baking sheet.) Bake in the middle of your oven for about 50 minutes, or until your knife comes out with just a few moist crumbs clinging desperately to it. Better slightly under than over.
- Cool in the pan for ten minutes or so, then flip onto a rack and cool completely.
For The Daniel
- Heat the sugar in a saucepan over medium-low heat. Keep swirling pan every few minutes. While it’s heating, melt together butter and cream in saucepan over low heat. Remove from heat when butter is melted.
- When your sugar has melted and turned a nice mellow amber color remove it from the heat and whisk in the cream and butter mixture slowly. Stir in maple syrup, whiskey, and salt. Let this cool so it’ll be a bit more solid. I poured mine into a glass measuring cup, but any heat-proof thing will do.
- Put toasted pecans in a small saucepan over medium heat and just cover with maple syrup. Let heated syrup coat pecans. Put coated pecans on parchment paper or tin foil to cool.
For The Rex
- In a large bowl, whip cream and liqueur together until it forms stiff peaks (2–3 mins). Okay, but a very large bowl, otherwise you’ll spatter everything.
- When you’re ready to assemble THE REX, plop whipped cream on a chunk of gingerbread and sprinkle with desired quantity of pistachios.
For The Roan
- Requires no instructions, really. Just, like, use a ripe pear and some ridiculously delicious cheese, and dust with cayenne if you’re into that kind of thing.