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TCP Kitchen

2017 Holiday Recipe Contest

Rebekah Stewart of San Bernard EC is grand prizewinner

Among the fantastic recipes submitted by readers for this year’s contest, our staff most loved the Warm Gingerbread With Lemon Basil Sauce by Rebekah Stewart, a member of San Bernard Electric Cooperative.

Some testers said they could drink the accompanying lemon basil sauce, while others would be happy just to have the warm gingerbread with cinnamon whipped cream. You can choose to plate the recipe with all its components or let guests pick and choose from among the three toppings. We guarantee they’ll all be happy.

Stewart wins $3,000, and four other co-op members each win $500 for their recipes, two sweet and two savory. Happy holidays from our table to yours!

Shannon Oelrich, guest food editor

Warm Gingerbread With Lemon Basil Sauce

“I love to use cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves in my holiday desserts,” Stewart says. “In this recipe, I’ve combined the flavors of gingerbread and apples and made it extra special by adding a delicious lemon basil sauce. This dessert is wonderful served warm, and the flavors complement each other perfectly.”


1 cup sugar
6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, softened
1 egg
1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 cup molasses
3/4 cup whole milk
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

Apple Compote

2 Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored and cubed
2 tablespoons butter
1/8 teaspoon fresh lemon juice

Lemon Basil Sauce

1/2 cup sugar
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 cup hot water
1 teaspoon lemon zest
Juice from 2 lemons
1 tablespoon butter
3 tablespoons heavy cream
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil

Cinnamon Whipped Cream

1 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup powdered sugar
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

1. Gingerbread: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Apply cooking spray to an 8-by-8-inch or 9-by-9-inch baking dish.

2. In a large mixing bowl, cream together sugar and butter 2 minutes. Add egg and mix until light and fluffy. Add sour cream, molasses and milk, and mix 1 additional minute.

3. In another large bowl, combine all the dry ingredients thoroughly, then slowly mix into the wet ingredients. Mix just until smooth. Pour batter into baking dish.

4. Bake 35 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean when inserted. Make compote, sauce and whipped cream while it bakes, so you can serve with warm gingerbread.

5. Apple compote: In a small saucepan, mix the cubed apples, butter and lemon juice. Cook on low heat, stirring occasionally, until apples are soft. Keep warm.

6. Lemon basil sauce: In a medium saucepan, mix sugar, cornstarch and nutmeg. Slowly whisk in hot water and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until sauce thickens. Once thickened, remove from heat and whisk in lemon zest, lemon juice, butter and heavy cream. Put saucepan back on medium heat, stir and cook 1 more minute. Remove from heat and stir in chopped basil. Keep warm.

7. Cinnamon whipped cream: In a medium bowl, whip together heavy cream, powdered sugar and cinnamon. Once it’s whipped, place in a piping bag to pipe onto each serving, if desired.

8. Serve gingerbread with a spoonful of compote and a drizzle of sauce, and top with whipped cream—or make your own combination.

Serves 16.

December 2017 Recipe Contest