I have always loved gingerbread houses – edible desserts that you could only dream of living in – and as much as I appreciate the beauty of a fully iced gingerbread house, it’s the lollies that really attract me!
My boyfriend and I decided to create our own gingerbread house on the weekend. We had never made one before, and thought we were being a bit too ambitious for a first attempt, but we figured if we were going to put the effort in we may as well throw ourselves into it! Luckily we managed to pull it off, and if we may say so ourselves, we think it looks pretty damn awesome.
After a few days of warm spring weather in Melbourne, a storm hit the city yesterday afternoon, bringing lots of cooling rain. It was perfect cake baking weather in my opinion. I couldn’t decide what kind of cake I wanted to make so I flicked through a stack of food magazines. It wasn’t too long before the combination of ginger and golden syrup caught my eye and when I remembered I had a jar of stem ginger in syrup waiting to be opened I decided it was the winner. I found the sticky double ginger cake recipe in Jamie Oliver’s 2009-2010 magazine yearbook (a bargain at $15 for almost 400 recipes), but further searching showed me it was also available online. This cake is really easy to bake, smells amazing and tastes great. I bet it would have looked really good too, but I was too impatient and decided to take it out of the tin before it had even slightly cooled, so the cake formed a few huge cracks and fell apart. My cake didn’t actually sink though, which is what most people on the internet reported as their problem with this recipe.
The cake collapse wasn’t a total disaster, it just meant I spooned my cake into some bowls and ate it like it was a pudding while it was still warm. As a pudding it would have tasted great with some vanilla ice cream, but I didn’t have any at hand – I wasn’t exactly expecting to eat it pudding style. I thought about making a quick syrup to drizzle over it but I took a quick reality check at the amount of sugar already in the cake and thought it was best to avoid doing that!
For all the ingredient quantities and cooking directions, check out the recipe on Jamie’s site but I promise it is seriously easy. You basically throw all the ingredients in either a stand mixer or food processor and bring it all together, and then you pour it into a pan, sprinkle a little sugar on the top and pop it in the oven. The most difficult step is probably just bashing the stem ginger into a puree. Actually, come to think of it, the most difficult part is avoiding the temptation to take the cake out of the tin too early!