This delicious old-fashioned gingerbread cake is super moist and full of rich and spicy flavor. It has just the right amount of sweetness to balance out the bitter dark molasses and fresh ginger. —Bonnie Meyer
(1 stick) unsalted butter, cut into chunks, plus more for pan
Heat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a 9×13-inch baking pan with parchment paper. Butter and flour the parchment and the sides of the cake pan.
In a medium or large saucepan, bring the water to a boil. Add the baking soda (it will foam up a bit), then remove from heat and let it sit for 5 minutes. Stir in the butter chunks until they've melted. Whisk in the brown sugar, molasses, and fresh ginger, and then let it sit and cool down for about 7-10 minutes.
Transfer the molasses mixture to a large mixing bowl, and then whisk in the eggs until just combined (if your saucepan is big enough to hold the dry ingredients, too, then you don't need to transfer the mixture to a bowl). Place the flour, ground ginger, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, salt and baking powder in a sifter and sift them over the molasses mixture. Stir everything together until just combined (it will be a bit lumpy - not perfectly blended).
Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for about 30 minutes, until you can insert a toothpick into the center of the cake and have it come out clean. Lift up on the edges of the parchment to remove the cake from the pan and let it cool in the parchment on a wire rack. Once the cake is cool, flip it over and remove the parchment, evening up the edges with a knife, if desired. Serve with whipped cream. *This gingerbread gets even tastier and more flavorful as it sits. Try a piece a few days after you make it and you'll be so pleasantly surprised!*