I make no apology for another Nigel recipe, mainly because if there were such a thing as an Oscar of cake recipes, this one would win it. In fact I might think up a name for such a prize because this cake ticks everything on my wish list. Easy, yes. Fast, yes. Delicious, yes. Can be eaten warm, yes. Keeps well, yes. Needs no special kit, yes. Makes everyone who eats it happy, yes. Even non-ginger eaters like this cake it’s that good. Is it perfect? I think it might be.
PS Lower-case tsp = teaspoon and upper-case Tsp = tablespoon.
Nigel Slater’s Double Ginger Cake
You will need:
a square cake tin (20-22cm across)
250g self-raising flour
2 level tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 level tsp bicarbonate of soda
pinch of salt
200g golden syrup
2 Tsp of syrup from the stem ginger jar (see below)
125g butter (I use unsalted; Slater doesn’t specify)
about 55g stem ginger in syrup (three lumps or so, but two or four won’t hurt)
2 heaped Tsp sultanas
125g dark muscovado sugar (for the first time this weekend I used this, and just this, rather than a mix of light brown, caster and whatever else was in the cupboard. The muscovado works miles better…)
2 large eggs (have to say mine are usually medium; when did eggs get so expensive?)
1. Preheat the oven to 180C/gas 4.
2. Sift flour, with ground ginger and cinnamon, bicarb of soda and salt, into a large bowl.
3. Put the golden syrup, syrup from the ginger jar and butter into a small saucepan and warm over a low heat.
4. Chop the ginger up into small pieces (see photo below).
5. Add chopped ginger, sultanas and muscovado sugar to the butter and syrup mix…
6. …stir it all together until everything is melted into one big sticky mixture. You can let it bubble a bit but the aim is to blend it all together not to cook it.
7. Whilst waiting for the syrupy sugary ingredients to become a mixture, break the eggs into a bowl, add the milk and beat to break up the egg and mix it into the milk.
8. Remove the sugar mixture from the heat and pour into the dry ingredients.
9. Stir the dry ingredients and sugar-butter-ginger mix together so that they look a bit like this…
11. Mix it together and you should end up with something relatively liquid but heavy like this:
12. Pour it into the prepared tin…
and bake for 35 minutes until a skewer (or a knife) inserted into the centre of the cake comes out clean. Well, Nigel says 35 but I have yet to make it and succeed, even with a really preheated oven, in less than 45. So depending on your oven, check it after 35 (or less if your oven is a bit hasty) but be aware it may need a little longer. When it’s done, leave it in the tin to cool (unless you are serving it warm) then wrap it in baking parchment and store in an airtight container (it keeps well and apparently gets better after a day or two, but I’ve found it never lasts that long…).
13. You can probably tell from this last photo that a) I don’t have a skewer and b) I’m quite impatient…