Lunchbox Treats – Gingerbread Cake
From June 2010, this is the perfect cake for this time of year. It warms from within and is perfect with a late afternoon cup of tea.
This is a dark fudgy gingerbread cake rather than the chewy biscuit dough used for making gingerbread men. Growing up, it was always made in my family as a loaf, then cut into thick slices and buttered before being served with a cup of tea; this recipe makes a larger square cake.
There is no getting around the request for treacle, which is a darkly black, thick and slightly bitter sugar product, located right next to golden syrup in your supermarket. Some recipes I have found ask for molasses which is even less refined than treacle, but hard to buy in Australia. Those of you in the US may want to use molasses instead.
Makes a 25cm square cake
125g butter; softened; 1/2 cup dark brown sugar; 1 cup treacle or molasses; 3 eggs; 450g plain flour; 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda; 2 tbsp ground ginger; 1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon; 1 tsp ground nutmeg; 3/4 cup buttermilk OR milk with 1 tsp lemon juice added; 4 tbsp fresh orange juice
Preheat oven to 180C. Grease a square cake tin and line with baking paper.
Cream butter and sugar in a large bowl until light and fluffy. Add treacle, then beat in the eggs one at a time. Sift the flour with the bicarbonate of soda and spices and set aside.
Combine buttermilk and orange juice. Beat flour and buttermilk alternately into creamed mixture, finishing with the flour. Pour into the prepared tin and bake for 50 minutes until a skewer comes out clean.
Cool on a wire rack before turning out. Store in an airtight container.
$4.30 for a square cake