I love cake. I have a few favourites, chocolate, carrot, banana, lemon, victoria sponge…oh ok, I just like most cakes really.
Being a farmer’s wife, I should really be able to bake. I can and do on occasion, although not as frequently as the mother-in-law. The OH moans that cakes on the farm are like buses. None for ages and then they arrive from everywhere. It seems that whenever I fancy making cake, his mum does and quite often my sister in law does at the same time. Bad planning.
Cake is one of those foods that brings people together. It’s almost natural that if you’ve friends coming round you have a cake. Or if you’re out for coffee, you may have a slice of cake as well as your drink.
When I’d just had N, I ate a lot of cake with my NCT friends. We met up a lot, and ate a lot together. One of the girls set up a cake business at the time as well, so we did a lot of cupcake flavour testing.
I’ve not yet got into the cake baking for any school events. So far they’ve been during the week, and after work in the evenings, I don’t really have time to bake. So I’ll have to wait for weekend events before sharing any cakes for school.
Coming up to Christmas is a heavy cake making time on the farm. Shoot season starts in early November, and usually the guns and beaters arrive in the morning and have some cake at their breaktime. With Christmas approaching it’s time to get out the spices and feel all Christmassy as well. We don’t often want heavy chocolate cake at this time of year, because we’ve often overdosed on chocolate around halloween and at pre-Christmas catch ups, so I find sticky ginger cake goes down a treat.
Ginger cake is one of my favourites (Jamaican ginger cake was quite often eaten in my youth as a treat!), and I find it always bakes well because of all the wet ingredients. On Flora’s Christmas recipe page, the sticky ginger cake looked to be one to try.
I decided to bake it on a weekend that I was going out for a baby shower – there’s nothing like afternoon tea with a few friends for a catch up – and needed to leave something for dessert for the OH and N.
Apart from stem ginger in syrup I had all of the ingredients at home so it was nice and quick to make. Because I’m really lazy I resorted to melting the butter, treacle, syrup and sugar together in the microwave instead of on the hob. I’m not keen on stem ginger so just used the syrup rather than including the pieces in the cake, but then I found a pack of chocolate stem ginger pieces in the larder and used those to decorate it. For once, my icing worked really well (it’s my downfall when baking, I’m not that great at icing usually).
I did my ginger cake in a loaf tin rather than a round one which I think helps keep it moist – I find my round cakes get a bit dry on the edges in comparison. It really did look like a good cake even without the icing. I can verify it tasted as good as it looked. Some ginger cakes can be quite heavy with the stickiness, but this one was so light as well as the richness of the spice.
225g self raising flour
115g dark muscovado sugar
115g golden syrup
115g black treacle
115g Flora cuisine
1tsp bicarbonate of soda
1tsp ground ginger
1tsp ground cinnamon
85g Stem ginger in syrup (chopped)
100g icing sugar
2-3 tbps ginger syrup
- Mix the dry ingredients
- Melt the syrup, Flora, sugar, milk, treacle together
- Combine wet and dry
- Stir in stem ginger chunks (drained – retain syrup for the icing)
- Add the egg
- Bake, cool.
- Make the icing up, and decorate the cooled ginger cake.
It’s not often there aren’t any comments from my making a cake. ‘It’s too dry’, ‘it’s split’, ‘where’s the icing’ and more. This time, none. No moans at all. Just a cake that’s being eaten each day and enjoyed.
It turns out maybe I can bake satisfactorily. Maybe I’ll be called on to bake for the shoot dinners more regularly now. I’ll definitely be baking this cake again.
Disclosure: This is a sponsored post.