Tuesday, March 31, 2009
Today was an important birthday for Lori at my job, and she had to work! Little Debbie organised a birthday party potluck, and I was assigned to bring the cake. I brought a nice ginger cake: the same one Annie gets for her birthday, but tripled (and veganised). Our colleagues were astonished. How could it be so dark while not having any chocolate in it? Molasses! Whoever would think to put molasses in a cake? They liked it, though, and some asked for the recipe, so here it is.
When I'm making a single recipe I use treacle, but tripling the recipe would have meant using $15 worth of treacle so I decided to use molasses. I only had a 12oz bottle, so I went to the store this morning to get a couple more bottles. The store had been rearranged recently, and I couldn't find the molasses anywhere. It wasn't by the sugar and flour, it wasn't by the honey and jam, and it wasn't by the marshmallows. There wasn't any corn syrup either; that whole section was missing. The customer service man and a cashier I asked couldn't find it either. After half an hour of searching I settled for some blackstrap molasses from the healthy baking section: I could dilute it with corn syrup.
It's always been a problem finding a suitable pan for this cake. I have two versions of the original recipe, one calling for a 6" round tin and the other calling for a 7" tin. The 7" tin seems like it will work, but then the batter boils over in the oven and makes a terrible mess. Now I've settled on a deep 8" tube pan, but an 8" springform pan should work as well.
Dark Ginger Cake
4oz brown sugar
2t each flax meal and Ener-g Egg Replacer with 3T water
10oz molasses or treacle
1t ground ginger
2oz sultanas or golden raisins
2oz crystalised ginger, sliced
2oz walnuts, toasted and coarsely chopped
2T soy milk
1/2t baking soda
Beat the margarine till soft, then beat the sugar in till the mixture's fluffy. Beat the flax meal, egg replacer, and water till fluffy and foamy (it's easiest with an immersion blender), then add to the margarine mixture along with the molasses and beat some more. Add the flour, ginger, and salt, then the raisins, crystalised ginger, and nuts. Warm the milk , mix the baking soda in, then add it to the batter. Turn the mixture in to your buttered, floured cake tin and bake in a 350°F oven for 45 minutes-1 1/2 hours. The time depends on both your pan (a tube pan will make it bake far more quickly than it would in a springform pan) and whether you want it to be cakey or squidgey. In any case, if it's going to bake longer than 45 minutes cover it with tin foil at that point so it won't darken too much.