Monday, 4 August 2014

Ginger Cake

When I woke up on Saturday morning and pulled back the curtains there was rain in the sky and the distinct feeling of autumn in the air - and I had the overwhelming urge for comfort baking. Not your 'fancy pants' cup cakes or victoria sponge but a good old fashioned batter cake.

So out came the treacle; the butter; eggs and flour; the pans and baking parchment; wooden spoons and mixing bowls - and as the rain beat down against the window - I wrapped myself and the kitchen in the comfort & smells of a rich moist ginger cake.

Here's my tried & tested recipe

60g butter
125g syrup (one tablespoon of dark treacle the rest golden syrup)
100g plain flour
25g self-raising flour
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
1 heaped tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp mixed spice 
100g caster sugar
a pinch of salt
125ml milk
1 egg, beaten

Pre heat your oven 170C/ Gas 3

Butter & line the base of loaf tin (12x23 cm)

Because this is a comfort cake and the making & baking it is all part of that - I like to take my time and lavish it with loads of attention & care so to achieve all that 'warm 'n' fuzzies' this cake is made by hand - no mixers were involve!

Go grab your favourite saucepan and add the syrups and the butter

Place on a low and gentle heat until the butter has melted into the thinning syrups - I like to stand and watch this happen, slipping into a zen like state whilst the butters & syrups combine, stirring occasionally

- set aside whilst you gather the rest of the ingredients

Weigh out your flours, sugar, spices, bicarb and salt and sieve into your mixing bowl

Measure the milk & add the egg......

Whisk both together with a fork until the egg has broken up and combined with the milk

and pour the egg mix over the flour etc

Combine with the fork

until a smooth thick batter is reached

pour in your warm (but not hot) butter/syrup mix

and combine

pour into your prepared tin and pop in the oven. Bake for 35-40 mins and then check that the cake has left the sides of the tin and a skewer comes out clean when inserted into the centre of the cake.

Leave the cake to cool for a while in the tin and then transfer to a cooling rack.

Now this is the difficult part - your house now has a warm ginger/butterscotch smell and a cooling cake is waiting for you - but - it's much, much tastier & stickier if it's left to mature for a few days - wrapped in foil or in a tin.

I satisfied my tasted buds by cutting it into squares and eating the end bits .......don't tell Andrew he's waiting patiently for Tuesday to arrive!

 Ginger cake