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Gingerbread Baby Cakes

2 cups flour
1/4 instant espresso powder
3 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tbsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt, preferably kosher or fine sea salt
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
2 sticks (8 ounces) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup (packed) dark brown sugar
4 large eggs, room temperature
2 1/2 tbsp peeled and finely chopped fresh ginger
2 cups unsulphured molasses

Melted butter for greasing the pans. Sweetened whipped cream for
serving.

Position the rack in the center of the oven. Preheat the oven at
350F. Brush the insides of 8 mini or baby cakes pans (4 inches
across, 1 inch deep. or use a 10 inch round cake pan). Flour and
butter them, and tap out the excess flour.

In a small bowl, whisk the flour, espresso powder, cocoa, ground
ginger, baking powder, salt, ground black pepper together just to
mix, reserve.

Put the butter and brown sugar in the bowl of a mixer fitted with
the paddle attachment or use hand mixer and beat on medium- high
speed until the mixture is smooth and creamy, scraping down the
sides ot the bowl with a rubber spatula as needed. The butter and
sugar must be beaten until they are very light and fluffy, the
process can take 6 to 8 minutes with a hand mixer, 3 to 4 with the
heavy duty mixer. Reduce the speed to medium and add the eggs one
at a time, beating on high speed for 30 seconds to a minute after
each addition. The mixture may look curdled, but that's OK, it
will smooth out as you continue. Beat in the fresh ginger and add
the molasses, mixing on medium speed for 1 to 2 minutes until
completely smooth. With a rubber spatula fold in the dry ingredients,
mixing only until they are incorporated. Pour the batter in the
pan(s). Bake 20-25 minutes for the small cakes, 50-60 minutes for
a large one, until the cakes are springy and the tops crack. Take
care not to overbake. Cool 10 minutes on a rack, run a knife around
the edges and unmold. Turn the cakes over so they cool right side
up. Serve with whipped cream.

These moist cakes will keep covered at room temperature for 3 days
or they can be frozen.

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