This is a lovely recipe for ginger cake - and it even makes two at once, so it is time and energy efficient as well. If you have wheat intolerance as I do, you can substitute barley flour, and dairy intolerant people can sub dairy-free margerine, and it even works if you do both, as I do if I want to eat it myself! It is a very accommodating recipe.
I call it "Beth's Nanna's Ginger Cake" as it was given to me by Beth's mum when I was childminding Beth, but that was years ago, and I do not remember Beth's surname, and never knew her Nanna at all, so I cannot give any credit for it beyond that - and I have no idea where Beth's Nanna got the recipe - but all credit to her, it is a great cake. If you can bear to leave it a day or two, wrapped up in foil in a tin, it will develop a slightly sticky top. I generally make two and freeze one for another week.
So - melt together 12oz golden syrup and 8oz margerine in a saucepan and then leave to cool. In a bowl, sieve together 1lb self-raising flour, 2 tsp salt, 4 tsp ground ginger, 2 tsp bicarbonate of soda, 1 tsp ground mixed spice and 6 oz caster sugar. In a smaller bowl or a jug, beat together 2 eggs and 2 cups (I use an American cup measuring set) of milk.
Once the melted margerine mixture is cool, pour it over the dry ingredients and add the beaten egg and milk, and then mix it all very thoroughly - ideally with a hand-held electric mixer. If you do not mix it well enough, you will find little bubbles of flour in the cooked cake, so it is well worth a few minutes extra beating.
The mixture will be quite fluid at this point and not perhaps what you expect cake batter to look like - don't panic - this is OK. Grease and line two 2lb loaf tins and pour half of the mixture into each one. Set both tins onto a baking tray and slide into the oven - I use the bottom shelf and cook at 160 C for about 45 minutes to an hour. When you check it with a metal skewer or knife, the skewer/knife should come out clean if it is done. Let them cool in the tins, and then wrap one in greaseproof paper and foil to eat soon, and put the other into a large freezer bag and pop in the freezer, or give as a gift to a friend!
I am still not feeling right, so I am staying at home and resting a lot of the time. The weather today has not been encouraging at all: yesterday's sunshine was replaced by cloudy skies and strong winds. The FH has been a taxi driver all day, and isn't finished yet. He started off by taking the EFG to her school early to catch her bus for the school trip to Hampton Court Palace today (they have been studying the Tudors), then he came home, ate his breakfast and took the YFG up the road to her school. It was soon time to repeat that trip at 3 to fetch her home and he had to go back again at 4 for her parent-teacher consultation - and he still has to go back to town tonight to fetch the EFG. She will be later than she expected as she has texted to say that the bus she was on broke down and they have had to wait over an hour for a replacement vehicle. Luckily, this is her last school day before the half-term holiday so she can sleep in tomorrow morning.
Oil prices are still sliding downwards, so I got one company down to £212 today for 500 litres - that was 40.5p/litre - I think that when it gets to a flat 40p, I will order!
Shed of the year 2017.
4 hours ago