Friday, October 8, 2010

Malt Whisky Ginger Cake

Autumn's Bounty

So, we have about half a bottle of Johnnie Walker Red Label that I bought for Burns Night earlier this year that is just gathering dust. Paul loathes any Scotch whisky (he's a "bourbon man") and I'm really not much of a drinker, even though I actually like Scotch. I am, however, a bit of a Philistine when it comes to whisky. I bought the Johnnie Walker simply because it had a royal warrant and, to be honest, I can't say that the single malts I've had were really any better. That's evidently why I have a food blog and not a liquor blog. Besides, to make up for it, I'm a total snob about plenty of other things.

Anyway, when I saw this recipe in The Guardian, I knew I had to try it at home. Mostly, I've just adapted the ingredients for the way Americans bake (Imperial units, volume rather than weight, etc.), but I did lower the oven temperature because I was using a larger pan and I reduced the amount of crystallized ginger and added some extra ground ginger. That's because when I bought the crystallized ginger I thought (silly me!) that an entire jar would be more than enough.

Malt Whisky Ginger Cake

Yields 1 loaf cake
Serves 10

¼ cup unsalted butter
¼ cup black treacle
1/3 cup (packed) light brown sugar
2 large eggs
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
¼ cup Scotch whisky
2.6-oz. jar crystallized ginger (about 2/3 to ¾ cup)
1 ½ cups cake flour
1 ½ teaspoons baking soda
1 ½ tablespoons ground ginger
1 tablespoon mixed spice
1/3 cup powdered sugar

Preheat oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit. Line an 8 ½” x 4 ½” x 2 ½” loaf pan with parchment paper and set aside.

In a medium saucepan over medium-low heat, melt the butter. As soon as the butter is melted, remove the saucepan from the heat and whisk in the treacle and sugar until smooth. Whisk in the eggs then the oil and whisky.

Using a rubber spatula, stir in the crystallized ginger. Next, add the flour one-half-cup at a time, stirring after each addition until combined. Stir in the baking soda, ground ginger and mixed spice.

Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan and bake for 45 minutes, or until a cake tester comes out clean. Cool in the pan for 10 minutes, then turn out on a wire rack to cool completely.

When the cake is totally cool, mix the powdered sugar with enough water to make an icing (it takes a lot less water than one would think) and then spread it over the top of the cake.
For Mika and anyone else who was wondering about PDF hosting--
I just save my Word documents as PDFs (with my Mac, the option is in the print window) and then upload them to Really couldn't be easier, even for tech-incompetent me.


Paul poses with his doppelgänger, Simon the Chipmunk.


  1. The cake looks amazing! I'm going to have to try it. I found a Roasted Butternut Squash with Rosemary from The Guardian that I want to try as well.
    Thanks for the info on the PDFs.

  2. I can't tell...which one's Paul? Cake looks great. Are you making it again when we visit?


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