Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Whisky Ginger Cake

This cake is based on the drink, so I was quite surprised when looking for a whisky ginger cake that they were often described as a “Methodist tea time cake.” Really? Huh. I had no idea. I thought that it would just be a nice combination that would translate well to a cake. Thankfully I was able to find this recipe and it worked out very well. My only struggle was figuring out which pan to use. The recipe calls for a 17 centimeter pan, which is 6.6 inches. I don’t have loaf pans that size (I have tiny ones and larger ones). I ended up baking this in an 8” x 4” pan, and it made a nice petite cake.

This cake is simple to put together, you warm some ingredients on the stove and then add the rest of the ingredients, similar to what you would do for one bowl brownies. While this is a British recipe, I think that most of the ingredients can be found here in the states. The only tricky ingredient is black treacle. I can find this at the British shop, but you could also use molasses. I always substitute brown sugar for muscovado sugar; I can find muscovado sugar but it’s really expensive.

I have to admit, I am not the biggest whisky drinker. In some drinks it’s ok, but it’s really strong for me. In this cake, I don’t think that you can taste the whisky at all. I used honey whiskey* in this cake, because I thought the extra sweetness from the honey would be good in this cake. I really like molasses and ginger treats, so I loved the flavors in this cake. If you’re looking for strong whisky flavor, you won’t find it here, but I thought this cake was perfect to pair with a cup of tea.

*In the U.S. and Ireland, it’s whiskey (with the “e”). In England, Scotland and Canada, it’s whisky. If you’re curious.

Whisky Ginger Cake
2 ounces butter
3-1/2 ounces black treacle or molasses
2-1/2 ounces brown sugar
2 eggs
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1/3 cup whisky
3-1/2 ounces chopped candied ginger
6 ounces flour
1½ tsp baking soda
4 teaspoons ground ginger
1-1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
¼ teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon cloves
6 ounces powdered sugar
¼ teaspoon ginger

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease a small loaf pan. I used an 8” x 4” loaf pan.

In a large saucepan over low heat, melt the butter. Remove from the heat and stir in the dark treacle and brown sugar; stir until smooth.  Add the eggs and mix until incorporated. Stir in the oil, whisky, and candied ginger.

In a separate bowl combine the flour, baking soda, and the spices. Add the flour mixture to the butter mixture in the saucepan and beat until well combined. Spoon into the prepared pan.

Bake for 30-40 minutes, until a thin knife inserted into the cake comes out clean. The baking time will depend on what size pan you use, so check early in the baking time to avoid over baking the cake. Remove from the oven and allow the cake to cool in the pan for 15 minutes. Remove the cake form the pan and place on a wire rack to cool completely.

In a small bowl, combine the powdered sugar and ¼ teaspoon ginger. Add 1-2 tablespoons of water to make a glaze. Drizzle the glaze over the cooled cake.

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