honey gingerbread

. . .

honey gingerbread  |  movita beaucoup

I survived the cake station. You were probably wondering – perhaps even fretting – so I thought I should tell you that yes, I survived the final station of my first baking school rotation. I was uber prepped. I didn’t sleep all week. My jelly roll got rolled, my black forest cake got tricked out, and my angel food cake was a delight. I mise en placed the crap outta that station. I took organization to the next level. When one of my teammates was struggling with his products, my chef instructor jabbed his finger toward me and yelled, “DON’T YOU HELP HIM!” I was elated. I mean, I felt bad for my teammate, but the mere suggestion that I have a working knowledge of anything at school – which could, in turn, be useful to someone else – made me wanna bring in ‘da noise and possibly ‘da funk.

honey gingerbread  |  movita beaucoup

Now we’re onto gingerbread. Bigger teams, new people to work with. Two weeks to create massive gingerbread displays for charity. For the first time since starting school, I hardly feel like barfing at all. Aside from gingerbread architecture, we’ve had a crash course in all things ginger related: royal icing, fondant, gum paste, marzipan, and sugar work. It’s basically a ginger sweatshop – complete with Christmas carols and snacks. Of course, all of this merriment makes me worry that something very, very bad must be around the corner…

honey gingerbread  |  movita beaucoup

So, to celebrate all things ginger, I made you some cake. Actually, I tested this recipe out in the summer – when I had time to eat and stuff. This cake is best served with lashings of whipped cream or a huge scoop of ice cream – I think all gingerbread is. Honey replaces the molasses of a traditional gingerbread, and it is only lightly spiced. Like all cakes, you don’t want to over bake it – so keep a close eye on it at the end – dry gingerbread is icky. The top of this cake will likely start to brown well before the cake has cooked through, so once the colour is golden, lay a piece of tinfoil overtop of the pan – don’t press it down, just lay it over top – and it will prevent the cake from over-browning.

Also, my class was debriefed last week. That might sound like a panty raid, but it’s not. It’s a chance to find out your marks and where you stand in the class. You’ll be happy to know that I’m not a total doofus and that my “enthusiasm is appreciated.” Who knew nausea and anxiety could be so easily confused with gaiety?

. . .

Honey Gingerbread – print and bake

Yields a 9 x 13 baking pan.

  • 2 1/2 cups cake flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup butter, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 cup honey
  • 1 large egg, room temperature
  • 1 cup buttermilk

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease a 9 x 13 x 2 inch baking pan. I like to line my pan with parchment paper as well.

In a large bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, ginger and salt. Set aside.

In the large bowl of your stand mixer, on medium speed, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy – about 3-5 minutes. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl. Add the honey, and beat on medium speed for one minute. Scrape down the sides and bottom of bowl. Add the egg, and beat on medium speed for one minute. Scrape down the sides and bottom of bowl.

Add one third of the flour mixture and mix until well combined. Add 1/2 of the buttermilk, and mix until well combined. Add another third of the flour mixture, mixing until combined. Add the rest of the buttermilk, mix until well combined. Add the last of the flour mixture and mix until well combined. Be sure to scrape down the sides and bottom of bowl after each addition.

Spread the batter evenly into the prepared baking pan, smoothing the top with your spatula. Bake for about 35 minutes – until a cake tester inserted into the centre of the cake comes out clean. Allow to cool on a wire rack.

Serve warm or cold, topped with a dollop of whipped cream or a scoop of ice cream.

NOTE: if you find the top of the cake is browning too deeply before the cake has finished baking, cover the top gently with a piece of tinfoil – don’t allow it to touch the surface of the cake, and don’t press it around the edges of the pan. Just set it gently on top of the cake pan to prevent the top of the cake from burning.


  1. annewoodman on November 20, 2012 at 9:51 pm

    Congratulations on mise en placing your way to victory! I’m sure the gingerbread segment is totally safe… you’ll be fine… except that it reminds me a bit of Hansel and Gretel, and we all know how spooky their little woods experience was. ; )

    I can’t wait to try this gingerbread. I’ve never made it without molasses! Yum.

  2. emmalina73 on November 20, 2012 at 10:23 pm

    Sounds like you are fully rocking the baking school! I was thinking of you today so it’s lovely to hear how well you are doing…but mainly I was reading your post thinking ‘wow I wish I could eat that cake’ with a background hum of ‘that is a really, really cool plate’. Am loving the fabulous photography, mouth watering baking and the glimpses into your exciting endeavours!

  3. thekalechronicles on November 20, 2012 at 10:50 pm

    I appreciate the honey in this gingerbread — my favorite gingerbread is a Mollie Katzen recipe that uses honey and molasses, melted butter and yogurt and 5 Tbsp of fresh ginger. I also like an Alice Medrich one with chocolate in it.

  4. Barbara Bamber | justasmidgen on November 20, 2012 at 11:16 pm

    Congratulations on your success at school! I’m not surprised.. just look at this luscious cake! xx

  5. Juls on November 21, 2012 at 2:42 am

    I’m glad you’re more confident and not breaking so much crap anymore! The very idea of the cake station had me shuddering. Balls to that shit. We made gingerbread in my class yesterday and I swear mine was as shrivelled and dark as ruin. DO you have exams this term??

  6. Love Loulabel on November 21, 2012 at 5:27 am

    yay that you weren’t crying tears of unhappiness in the car on the way home – that rocks! And, well, of course you wouldn’t feel nauseous because umm, like, dude, ginger is an anti-nausea food so totally eat that cake (but not the entire charity gingerbread station because that’d just be wrong). AND I love that you got the threatening finger point of ‘don’t you dare’ be more awesome on behalf of other people too. Yah, you’ll be head chef soon enough!! (ha I might or might not have just said ‘yah’ which means you and Lunatic are making me Canadian :p I’m freakin worried now…xoxoxox

  7. frugalfeeding on November 21, 2012 at 6:39 am

    Looks gorgeous! What a wonderful cake! The photos are incredible too. I’m so happy that’s it’s going so well. It’s really great 🙂

  8. allythebell on November 21, 2012 at 8:19 am

    I’m gonna mis en place the crap out of more stuff. Way to go!

  9. shannon on November 21, 2012 at 9:21 am

    i just totally KNEW it; what did i tell you? i knew you would rock it on cakes. i am unsurprised by this news, but i am stoked all the same. and i consider a note about your “enthusiasm being appreciated” one of the most important things, anyway. it means people enjoy you (duh) and your attitude. it means you don’t let the hard stuff get you down. it means you may get stuck in mixers from time to time, but you perservere. also, when others find themselves caught in mixers, you probably make them feel okay about it. and that’s the BEST sort of person to have around.
    also, i love this honey cake. my sister is here for the holiday, and i make her lug a gallon jar of Tennessee dark wildflower honey with her every time she’s up here. when she drives, it’s not so bad. when she flies, like this time, it sometimes gets mistaken for a liquid explosive and she gets subject to interrogation about the “honey bomb.” and now i have another thing i can make her with it to show my appreciation.

  10. Amy on November 21, 2012 at 12:19 pm

    Congrats on your baking achievments 🙂 I’m SOOOO excited to see your team’s gingerbread display!!! I do hope you’ll share it 🙂

  11. Big Hungry Gnomes on November 23, 2012 at 8:03 am

    Congrats on sailing through your baking rotation. I feel ‘the very, very bad thing just around the corner’ will just be a barrage of jealousy over your awesome gingerbread display. This honey gingerbread seems like a wonderfully light take on the traditional molasses version and it looks incredible

  12. Lynne Knowlton on November 24, 2012 at 9:42 am

    The sound of honey gingerbread makes me do the happy dance. I am sharing this with my friends right now. All three of them. 🙂

  13. Jennie on November 25, 2012 at 8:11 pm

    I bet you were brining “da noise and da funk” on the inside. I know I’d be patting myself all over the back. I’m so glad to hear you’re killing it at baking school.

    It’s been what seems like forever since I’ve visited you, and shame on me. I’m currently knee deep in research for my final English paper (yay)! You don’t know how hard it is to write a paper when all you can think about is food. For reals hard. I’m dying to bake.

    Sorry for veering off topic. This gingerbread looks so light and fluffy. I’ll take mine covered in whipped cream.

  14. wendy@chezchloe on November 28, 2012 at 12:10 am

    I’m sure this cake tastes light and wonderful and I personally would smother it in whipped cream…but I’ll be damned if it wasn’t those straight crumbless perfect edges that caught my eye. You may be learning how to bake but this cake is like perfectly cut and the last photo is downright three-dimensional.
    You are such a funny woman. Wish you lived closer. x

  15. Eggton on November 29, 2012 at 5:47 pm

    So when they say “your enthusiasm is appreciated,” are they referring to a particular outfit that you wear everyday? Like maybe one that says “GO BAKE YOURSELF!” And has your name and the number 1 on the back? Or maybe you die your hair a different color every week, for the sake of team spirit? I just want to know the details so I can really visualize how proud I am of you.

    Also, do you get “brownie points” for having high enthusiasm levels? Ya get it? Brownie points? Bwahahaha.

  16. emma on December 4, 2012 at 12:19 pm

    Dawg, this looks delicious. So delicious that I almost didn’t cringe when seeing the whipped cream spoon on the tablecloth in the top picture. But I did, just a little.

    How did the gum paste go? Did you have to make super intricate decorations? Scary.

  17. Ann on December 13, 2012 at 8:16 pm

    HEYYY there! It’s been pretty busy ’round my parts lately, but I am so glad to be catching up on all your blogging! I’ve missed your spunk!! It’s so great to hear that you’re a pastry school conqueror! I knew it all along 🙂

  18. Carla on September 4, 2013 at 9:44 am

    Long time lurker, first time poster. Would like to thank you for this recipe. I made it for my daughter’s birthday today and we all loved it!
    Love from the Philippines,

    • movita beaucoup on September 4, 2013 at 5:23 pm

      Sending love back at cha, Carla! Mostly because I LOVE lurkers. (So glad you liked the recipe and took the time to stop by and say so!)

  19. movita beaucoup on October 29, 2014 at 8:16 am

    Comments on this post are now closed as it was published in November 2012. Happy baking!