Cream shortening and sugar; blend in molasses. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
Combine flour, salt, baking powder, soda and spices. Add to creamed mixture alternately with hot water. Spoon batter into a greased 9 x 9 x 2 inch baking pan. Bake at 350F for 40 minutes or until gingerbread tests done. Cool.
Yield: 9 to 12 servings.
Substitute 1 cup buttermilk for 1 cup hot water, if desired. Omit baking powder and increase soda to 1-1/2 teaspoon.
Cajun Country -- New Iberia, Louisiana