1 stick (4 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 box (1 pound) dark brown sugar
4 large eggs
1 cup sour cream
1/3 cup finely grated peeled fresh ginger (from a 2-ounce piece)
3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons unsulphured molasses dissolved in 1 cup hot water
1/4 cup finely chopped candied ginger
Lightly sweetened whipped cream, for serving
Preheat the oven to 350°. Grease and flour three 9-by-4-inch loaf pans. In a large bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, ground ginger, nutmeg, cloves and pepper.
In another large bowl, using a handheld electric mixer, beat the butter until creamy. Add the brown sugar and beat until blended. Add the eggs, 1 at a time, and beat until smooth, then beat in the sour cream and grated ginger. At medium speed, beat in the dry ingredients in 3 batches, alternating with the molasses.
Pour the gingerbread batter into the prepared pans and sprinkle with the candied ginger. Bake in the center of the oven for about 50 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the loaves comes out clean. Let cool in the pans for 15 minutes, then turn the loaves out onto a rack to cool completely. Cut the gingerbread in thick slices and serve with whipped cream.
The loaves can be wrapped in wax paper and then in foil and frozen for up to 1 month.