Baking is like alchemy.  You mix a bunch of things together, put it in the oven, and it bakes into a delicious, soft, mmmoist little item, and then you give it to your friends and they eat it and like it and really like you because of it and it’s all peaches and sunshine and wildflowers.  Baking is great.

I decided to make chocolate gingerbread because I wanted to use up a shriveled little knob of fresh ginger that had been getting lonely in my kitchen.  And baking is a positive form of procrastination.  I looked up Nigella Lawson’s chocolate gingerbread recipe in her book Feast, and since I like to bastardize recipes and am too lazy and petulant to get all the ingredients, I took what she said and came up with something that worked with what I had.  Now, usually I’m like an old granny about recipes and rather protective about them….so be VERY CAREFUL about who you share this with and carefully consider if they are worthy of handling such monumental information.

Chocolate Gingerbread

1/2 c. butter
1 1/4 c. brown sugar
1/4 c. white sugar
3/4 c. molasses
1 tsp. cinnamon
2 tsp. ginger
1 knob of fresh ginger, grated
2 tsp ground flax
2 c. water
2 c. all-purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/3 c. cocoa powder
pinch salt

Melt the butter (mm, buttahhhh).  While this is happening, mix together the ground flax with water in a little bowl, and then mix together the dry ingredients in a big bowl.  When the butter is melted, turn the heat off and mix in the sugars, molasses, and spices.  Add the butter mixture and flax-y water to the dry ingredients and mix gently.  Pour into greased pan.  (If you are momentarily caught in a whiff of slightly misguided aesthetic inspiration like I was, sprinkle over bits of clove, pumpkin seeds, and graham cracker crumbs on top.  The pumpkin seeds and graham cracker will be nice, but biting into a piece of clove will be not so nice….)  Bake at 350 F in a greased pan until it looks dry on top, maybe 45 minutes or so.  If all goes well, your chocolate gingerbread will turn out moist, dense, dark, and sexy.  Mm.  Yeah.

It was so enticing that I couldn’t wait for myself to get organized to take a photo before serving myself a slice…