Classes are ending this week (thank goodness!) and I promised my upper level seminar snacks on the last day. I decided I wanted to bake and I had some apples left in the fridge that needed using up. Apple spice cake? Apple muffins?
I wanted something holiday-related, so I went back through some of my bookmarked recipes. I found a recipe for pear gingerbread. Aha! Apple gingerbread it is.
Notes: Me and glaze? We're not friends. I've never been good at getting the consistency right. This recipe as it was originally written did not work: the glaze was too dry. I upped the amounts and that worked better. If there's one thing I've figured out, it's that glaze is not an exact science. I heated a little bit more milk than I needed and just fiddled with the amounts until I got it right.
I used my stand mixer to make the glaze and it worked great. You don't need to use it; you just need some elbow grease and a whisk.
Mixing the apple pieces into the flour will help them not sink to the bottom of the batter, so be sure not to skip that step.
The gingerbread is fluffy and sticky and delicious! If you're bored with other holiday desserts, give this one a try. It would be perfect for a holiday potluck because you can make it well in advance.
For gingerbread (adapted from this recipe):
2 cups flour
1 cup packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
2 teaspoons fresh ginger
1 cup milk
1/2 cup olive oil
1/2 cup molasses
1 teaspoon vanilla
For vanilla glaze (adapted from this recipe):
1 1/2 cup of confectioners sugar
1 tablespoon butter
2 tablespoons milk
1/4 teaspoon vanilla
Directions: Heat the oven to 350 and butter a 9x13 baking dish.
In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, and sugar. Peel and chop apples into small pieces (mine were a little smaller than 1/2 an inch). Mix the apples into the dry ingredients.
In another bowl, crack and beat the eggs. Add in oil, milk, vanilla, and molasses. Stir to combine.
Add the wet ingredients to the dry and stir until well-combined (don't over mix). Pour batter into the baking dish and bake for 30-40 minutes until a tester comes out clean.
Let cool completely and then cut into small squares. Put wax paper under a cooling rack and transfer the squares to the rack.
To make the glaze, add sugar, salt, and vanilla to the bowl of your stand mixer. Stir together. Melt the butter and add it to the bowl. Heat the milk for a few seconds in the microwave and pour it in the bowl while the mixer stirs. The glaze should be thick, but you should be able to drizzle it. If it seems too thick, add a little more milk. If it seems too thin, add a little more sugar.
Using a whisk or a fork, drizzle the glaze over the gingerbread. Allow it to set for about 15-20 minutes. Serve and enjoy!