I love this time of year with spices emulating from the kitchen and with my recipe for ginger and orange cake it doesn’t disappoint ! It is a delicious alternative to Christmas cake but still gives you that Christmas feeling. Ginger is one of my favourite spices. I use it in my juices, I use it in my savoury recipes, but I definitely have to admit I use it a lot more in baking!
My version of ginger and orange spice cake is a healthy version with honey and molasses used instead of the usual golden syrup and coconut sugar used instead of refined sugar, however you can use them ii you prefer. It doesn’t take away from the taste, in fact it improves it and produces a much moister cake, rich in flavour. While it is still hot I drizzle some orange and ginger syrup over it then leave it to cool before icing and decorating it.
I decorate it using frosted rosemary and frosted cranberries to give a Christmas look. I simply make a sugar syrup and dip the rosemary and cranberry in it. Then I place them on wired racks for 2 hours. Then finally dip it in white sugar and the sugar sticks like frost!
Health Benefits Of Ginger
Ginger is soothing on the stomach, helping to aid digestion and prevent nausea. It is high in potassium, known to lower blood pressure. Ginger has natural anti inflammatory properties to help reduce inflammation. It also is anti bacterial, helping to protect the body from illness. Finally ginger helps to lower blood pressure and lower cholesterol so is a beneficial part of any diet.
Cooking With Ginger
While I love cooking with fresh ginger, it is not always best to use it in baking. Ground ginger is able to withstand higher temperatures than fresh ginger without altering its flavour, which is why it is ideal in baking. When cooked, fresh ginger becomes milder in taste.Fresh ginger is delicious in syrups to moisten your cakes which is why I use it in my recipe for ginger and orange spice cake.
If you like this then try my recipe for Spelt Gingerbread Cookies.
If you would like to see how I styled this photograph check out my YouTube tutorial on how I got this shot. It may help you style your food or inspire you to take more food photos!
- 150g treacle
- 100g honey
- 200g coconut sugar (or soft brown sugar)
- 220g butter
- 3 eggs
- 100g greek yogurt
- 350g spelt or plain flour
- ½ teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
- 1½ teaspoons baking powder
- 3 teaspoons ground ginger
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon nutmeg
- pinch of ground cloves, optional
- Zest from 1 orange
- Orange and ginger syrup:
- 1 inch cube of fresh ginger, peeled and chopped
- Juice from 2 oranges
- 2 tablespoons honey
- To decorate:
- 200g icing sugar
- 1 pasteurised egg white
- Squeeze of lemon juice
- 4 sprigs fresh rosemary
- Large handful of fresh cranberries
- 100g white sugar
- 120ml water
Preheat the oven to 170℃/340℉. Melt the treacle, honey, coconut sugar and butter over a low heat in a heavy bottomed pan. Leave to cool slightly.
In a separate bowl whisk the eggs and greek yogurt and set aside.
Sift the flour, bicarbonate of soda and baking powder into a large bowl. Add the ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg and ground cloves. Add the orange zest. Mix well.
Add half the treacle mix with half the egg mix and gently fold into the dry ingredients. Add the remaining treacle and egg mix and fold until thoroughly mixed together.
Place in a buttered bundt tin and bake in the oven for 40-45 minutes until a skewer comes out clean.
To make the syrup, place all the ingredients in a saucepan. Gently heat until it starts to just boil then simmer for 10 minutes. Leave to infuse while the cake is baking.
When the cake is baked, remove from the oven and leave to sit for 5 minutes. Using a skewer, make holes in the cake. Drain the syrup and pour over the top of the cake. Leave to cool until slightly warm.
Leave the cake to go cold while you make the icing.
You can substitute the royal icing with good quality white chocolate, melted. Add some grated orange zest and mix well before pouring over the cake.