This is one of the cakes that I had in mind to bake for our Children in Need cake stall in November. I changed my mind because I thought it wouldn’t sell well. The best sellers are always the large cakes which are decorated in lots of gooey icing.
However, I recently needed a cake and I was most intrigued by the recipe so I decided to give it a go. It’s called lemon and ginger cake and it’s essentially a ginger cake with half a jar of lemon marmalade in it.
I was reminded of my own collection of these books when Phil wrote about Bolton Flat Cakes in his blog “As Strong as Soup” a few months ago. I don’t know if I ever bought this particular book and in fact all of my little Sainsbury’s books have long since disappeared. I think I took them to the charity shop in an overenthusiastic and regrettable clearing out session.
Anyway, I liked the sound of Phil’s recipe – this kind of book is just my cup of tea right now - so after a bit of lazy internet research I found a copy on Amazon. For the princely sum of 99p (plus postage of course) so that’s not bad.
The cake was really easy to make, a melted mixture of butter and golden syrup being added to the flour with the marmalade. I used Robertson’s Silver Shred – it’s many decades since I bought a jar and it was a favourite of my grandmother. Which is how I came to have a large collection of the gollies that you could send off for, using the coupons on the jars.
The strange thing is that when I was measuring out my ingredients I found myself weighing in ounces, which isn’t easy as I have to deliberately reset my scales to do this. Obviously my mind was wandering back to times gone by as I followed the recipe – how spooky is that ?! I felt quite a little shiver down my spine when I realised what I was doing !!
I just gave mine a dusting of icing sugar and the flavour and texture of the cake are so lovely they speak for themselves, but I would have to think of a way of glamorising it if I was going to be sure it would sell at the cake stall next year.
(Next time I make the cake I will be tempted to add a little lemon zest to boost the lemon flavour.)
Lemon and Ginger Cake Recipe
250g golden syrup
250g (about half a jar) of lemon marmalade
1 egg, beaten
250g plain flour
2tsp baking powder
1tsp ground ginger
Preheat the oven to 180°C / 160° fan / gas mk 4.
Melt the syrup and butter together in a medium saucepan. Off the heat stir in the marmalade and egg. Set aside to go cold.
Grease and line the base of a 20cm (8”) square cake tin.
Sift the flour, baking powder and ginger into a large bowl, mix together. Add the syrup mixture and beat until well combined.
Pour the mixture into the tin and bake for about 45 minutes.
Cool in the tin for a few minutes then turn out onto a rack to cool completely.
Makes 16 squares.