EARLY AMERICAN GINGER CAKES

EARLY AMERICAN GINGER CAKES

Makes one dozen cakes

Cakes:
1-2/3 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup sugar
2 tablespoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup raisins
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1/4 cup oil
1/3 cup 2% lowfat milk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup dark molasses

Sliced Sugar Topping** (Optional):
2 tablespoons sugar
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon ground ginger
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg

Heat oven to 375ºF. Place paper or foil liners in 12 medium (about 2-1/2-inch) muffin cups. Place cooling rack on countertop.
For cakes, combine flour, sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and salt in medium bowl. Stir in raisins.
Combine eggs and oil in small bowl. Mix well. Stir in milk and vanilla. Add molasses. Mix well. Stir into flour mixture. Mix just until moistened. Spoon evenly into muffin cups.
For spiced sugar topping, combine sugar, cinnamon, ginger and nutmeg in small bowl. Sprinkle over batter.
Bake at 375ºF for 16 to 20 minutes or until toothpick inserted in centers comes out clean. Do not overbake. Remove to cooling rack to cool completely. Cool.

**Sift confectioners’ sugar over top of cooled, baked muffins if spiced sugar topping is omitted.