Serve plain, with whipped cream, or with ice cream and a sprinkling of chopped candied ginger, or get creative with toppings: Try caramel sauce, warm cranberry-apple compote, lemon sauce or a drizzle of cinnamon-maple icing.
Grease and flour a 9-inch square pan.
In a large bowl, cream together the sugars and butter. Beat in the egg and molasses.
In another bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, ginger and cloves. Blend into the creamed mixture, then stir in the hot water.
Pour batter into the prepared pan, and bake at 350 degrees F for 1 hour or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool it in the pan so it’s not steaming hot but still warm. Cut into squares, top as desired and serve.