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Monday 13 January 2014

Gluten Free: Toffee Ginger Cakes

I don't normally consider a half-empty jar of stem ginger to be a problem, but I'm trying to clean out my kitchen cupboards at the moment. It's something I do every new year in an attempt to use everything I bought in for Christmas, before I restock my cupboards.

Few things are better than ginger cake, in my humble opinion, and this one makes use of both ground ginger and stem ginger to give you a properly warming cake. In case it's all a bit too fierce for you, I've added a serious helping of toffee sweetness to help soothe the fire of the ginger. This is a chuck-it-all-in kind of cake that's ideal for making in the food processor. If you don't have one, either finely chop the dates before soaking in the tea, or use a stick blender to puree the date and tea mixture before adding to the rest of the mixture.

Toffee Ginger Cakes (makes 18 fairy cakes)
You'll need:
For the cakes
  • 150g pitted dates
  • 100ml hot strong tea
  • a big pinch of salt
  • 130g unsalted butter, softened
  • 100g dark muscovado sugar
  • 100g golden syrup
  • 2 large eggs
  • 260g gluten free self raising flour mix
  • 1 rounded tsp ground ginger
For the icing
  • 125g butter, softened
  • 125g icing sugar, sieved to remove lumps
  • 1 tbsp syrup from the stem ginger jar
  • a couple of balls of stem ginger
Make it!
The cakes:
  1. Preheat your oven to 180°C/350°F/gas mark 4.
  2. Pour the tea over the dates and leave to cool. I add the salt at this stage, too - don't worry, it dissolves in the tea so you don't get salty lumps in your cake.
  3. Add all the ingredients into the bowl of your food processor and pulse until smooth. (A few small lumps isn't the end of the world.)
  4. If you don't have a food processor just beat all the ingredients together with a wooden spoon or electric hand mixer until smooth well mixed.
  5. Fill fairy cake cases with the mixture. You want the cases to be about 90% full of cake batter.
  6. Bake for 18-20 minutes, until a skewer comes out cleanly.
  1. Beat the butter for the icing in a bowl until light and fluffy.
  2. Add the icing sugar and beat into the butter until smooth.
  3. Add the stem ginger syrup and combine well.
  4. Spread about a tablespoonful of icing over each cake and garnish with a thin slice of stem ginger.

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