Makes:1 (9-inch) cake (8 to 10 servings)
We know, one doesn’t associate good food from the Big Easy with upstate New York, but Maxie’s Supper Club is one of those places with food that’s capable of transporting you in mere forkfuls. This ginger cake can be thrown together in minutes. It’s so delicious that people will think you’ve been slaving in the kitchen all day.
What to buy: There are various intensities of molasses available, from light to blackstrap. Light (sometimes marketed as mild) tastes best in this recipe.
Butter, for coating the pan
2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for coating the pan
3/4 teaspoonground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoonground cloves
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon fine salt
3/4 cup light (or mild) molasses, such as Grandma’s
3/4 cupvegetable oil
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 1/2 teaspoonsbaking soda
1/2 cup packed (peeled and minced) fresh ginger (from about 1 [5-inch] piece)
Heat the oven to 350°F and arrange a rack in the middle. Coat a 9-inch round cake pan with butter and dust with flour, tapping out the excess; set aside. Have a whisk and rubber spatula on hand.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the measured flour, cinnamon, cloves, pepper, and salt to break up any lumps and aerate; set aside. In a large bowl, whisk the molasses, oil, and sugar until smooth.
In a large saucepan, bring the water to a boil over medium-high heat. Whisk in the baking soda, then whisk in the molasses mixture until combined; remove from heat. Using the rubber spatula, stir the ginger into the molasses mixture.
Whisk the dry ingredients, a little at a time, into the batter until just combined. Using the rubber spatula, stir in the eggs until just combined. Again using the rubber spatula, transfer the batter to the prepared pan and spread evenly.
Bake in the oven until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, about 45 to 50 minutes. Place on a rack to cool for at least 30 minutes. Run a knife around the perimeter of the pan and remove the cake from the pan. If you choose, dust with powdered sugar and serve with whipped cream.