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)
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
- Preheat your oven to 180°C/350°F/gas mark 4.
- 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.
- 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.)
- 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.
- Fill fairy cake cases with the mixture. You want the cases to be about 90% full of cake batter.
- Bake for 18-20 minutes, until a skewer comes out cleanly.
- Beat the butter for the icing in a bowl until light and fluffy.
- Add the icing sugar and beat into the butter until smooth.
- Add the stem ginger syrup and combine well.
- Spread about a tablespoonful of icing over each cake and garnish with a thin slice of stem ginger.