(NC) – Take a crack at this one. Colourful wooden nutcrackers have long graced German homes. Carved and painted into the shapes of soldiers and kings, they were the inspiration for Hoffmann’s much-loved Christmas story, The Nutcracker. The wonderful aroma of freshly baked gingerbread is also a German holiday tradition that has influenced Canadian kitchens. Cap off an evening at the theatre in royal fashion with this exquisitely moist and flavourful ginger-walnut loaf.
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Grease and flour an 8-inch (20-cm) square baking pan. Set aside.
In medium saucepan, bring applesauce to boil over medium heat. Remove from heat. Stir in molasses, corn syrup and baking soda. Mixture will bubble. Let cool slightly.
In medium bowl, whisk together flour, ginger, cinnamon, cloves, salt and pepper.
In separate bowl, beat eggs with brown sugar until fluffy. Beat in oil. Stir in flour mixture in three additions, alternating with two additions of the molasses mixture. Gently fold in walnuts and candied ginger.
Pour into prepared pan. Bake in 325 F (160 C) oven about 45 minutes or until cake tester comes out clean. Cool on rack.
Serve warm with whipped cream or dust with icing sugar.