This rich, splurge-worthy gingerbread is pimped out for fall, with pumpkin puree, fall spices, and a decadent layer of thick maple-vanilla icing smothered over the top. If you really want to go for it, be sure to add the coarse Demerara sugar and candied ginger as a final touch.
Spiced Pumpkin Gingerbread:
1/2cupvegetable oilcanola oil, or melted coconut oil
3/4cupdark brown sugar
2tablespoonsunsulphered dark or blackstrap molassessee note*
1 1/2cupswhite whole wheat flour or all-purpose flour
1teaspoonfine-grain sea salt or table salt
1 1/2cupspowdered sugar
3-4tablespoonspure maple syrup
1-2teaspoonsunsweetened almond milkor your favorite milk
1tablespoonchopped candied gingeroptional
Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Grease a standard-size loaf pan (mine is 10 1/2" x 5 1/2", but if yours varies by an inch or so either way, you should still be fine). Set aside.
To a large mixing bowl, add the oil, sugar, and molasses. Stir to combine. Add the eggs and pumpkin. Stir well until combined.
Set a fine-mesh sieve over the bowl and add the flour, baking powder, salt, ginger, cinnamon, cloves, and allspice to the sieve. Sift dry ingredients over the wet ingredients. (If you do not have a sieve, mix the dry ingredients in a separate bowl then add to the wet ingredients). Mix with a spatula or wooden spoon just until combined.
Pour batter into prepared loaf pan and spread the top with an offset spatula or butter knife to level. Bake until the bread starts to pull away from the sides of the pan and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, about 40 minutes.
Let cool in the pan for about 10 minutes, then carefully transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
While the loaf cools, chop the candied ginger (if using) and make the icing. To make the icing, sift the powdered sugar into a small bowl. Add 3 tablespoons pure maple syrup, 1 teaspoon milk, and vanilla extract. Stir with a fork or a flat whisk until a very thick paste begins to form. If a paste does not form, add an additional tablespoon of maple syrup and/or an additional teaspoon of almond milk. You do want the icing to be very thick so that it will stay on the top of the loaf, and it can take a minute or two of working and stirring the mixture for the paste to form, so keep that in mind.
When the loaf has cooled completely, pour the icing on top of the loaf. Working quickly (it dries out fast), spread the icing on over the top of the loaf. Immediately sprinkle with Demerara sugar and candied ginger if desired, gently pressing the toppings down with your hands to help cement it into the icing.
Let sit for several more minutes until the icing has set.
Slice and enjoy!
To store, wrap loaf in plastic wrap and keep at room temperature. It should last for several days.