Monday, 24 December 2018

Gingerbread Cake

If you're looking for a last minute but impressive recipe this Christmas, look no further! This delicious cake is sure to go down a treat.

Prep: 1 hour, 20 minutes
Cook: 30 minutes
Serves: 20 people

What do I need?

  • 150ml whole milk
  • 3 tablespoon black treacle
  • 225ml vegetable oil
  • 375g plain flour
  • 3 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 and a half teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
  • 375g light brown soft sugar
  • 1 and a half teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 and a half ground ginger
  • 3 pinches of ground cloves
  • 300ml buttermilk
  • 3 large eggs
  • 3 tablespoon dark rum
  • 1 and a half teaspoon vanilla extract
For the caramel biscuit icing:
  • 250g pack slightly salted butter, soft
  • 600g icing sugar, plus extra for dusting
  • 300g full-fat cream cheese
  • 2 teaspoon vanilla bean extract
  • 200g smooth caramelised biscuit spread
  • 50g dessicated coconut
  • silver edible glitter (optional)
  • gingerbread shapes

How do I make it?

  1. Measure the milk and treacle in a saucepan. Try greasing the measuring spoon with oil first so the treacle slides off easily. Bring to a gentle simmer and stir until combined, then set aside to cool. Meanwhile, grease 3 x 20cm loose-bottomed cake tins with a little oil and line the bases with baking parchment. Heat oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 4.
  2. Measure the flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda, sugar and spices into a large bowl, then add 1/2 teaspoon fine salt. Mix the dry ingredients together with a large whisk. If there are any large lumps of sugar, squeeze these through using your fingers until you have an even, sandy-textured mixture.
  3. In a jug, whisk the oil, buttermilk, eggs, rum and vanilla. Add the milk and treacle mixture, and mix well. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry, and whisk into a smooth batter. Divide between the tins and bake for 25-30 minutes until a skewer inserted into the centre of the cake comes out clean. Turn the cakes if needed for evening cooking. Leave the cakes to cool for 10 minutes in their tins, then transfer to a wire rack, peel off the parchment and leave to cool completely. Once cooled, you can wrap the sponges in cling film and store in a cool place for 4 days, or freeze for up to 2 months - the texture and flavour will be even better!
  4. To make the icing, put the butter and half the icing sugar in a large bowl. Mash together roughly with a spatula, then whizz with an electric hand whisk until smooth. Add the remaining icing sugar, the cream cheese, vanilla bean extract and biscuits spread. Mix again until smooth and evenly mixed. Transfer half the icing to another bowl and set aside. Use the remaining icing to stack the cakes and cover the entire outside in a thing layer - don't worry about making the cake look too neat at this stage, as any crumbs trapped in the icing will be covered in the final coat. Chill the cake for 30 minutes and the remaining icing for 20 minutes (remove the icing from the fridge 10 minutes before the cake to soften a little).
  5. When the icing on the cake is firm, remove it from the fridge and use the remaining icing to cover the cake. Smooth the sides using a palette knife, but leave peaks and dips on top for your snow scene. Top the cake generously with desiccated coconut, a dusting of sieved icing sugar and some edible glitter, if you like, then decorate the top and sides with gingerbread shapes. If you're not eating the cake within a few hours store it in the fridge, but bring back to room temperature before serving. Will keep for 2 days. 
Adapted from:

Did you try out this recipe? Let us know @office_fruit!

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