Sticky stem ginger cake with lemon icing

Sticky stem ginger cake with lemon icing

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(226 ratings)

Cook: 50 mins - 1 hr

Easy

Serves 12

Try this moist and gooey stem ginger cake

Nutrition and extra info

  • Freezable

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal285
  • fat10g
  • saturates6g
  • carbs50g
  • sugars31g
  • fibre1g
  • protein3g
  • salt0.81g
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Ingredients

  • 225g self-raising flour
  • 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
    Bicarbonate of soda

    Bicarbonate of soda

    Bicarbonate of soda, or baking soda, is an alkali which is used to raise soda breads and full-…

  • 1 tbsp ground ginger
    Ginger

    Ginger

    jin-jer

    Mainly grown in Jamaica, Africa, India, China and Australia, ginger is the root of the plant. It…

  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
    Cinnamon

    Cinnamon

    sin-ah-mun

    A fragrant spice which comes from the inner bark of a tropical tree. When dried, it curls into…

  • 1 tsp ground mixed spice
  • 115g butter, cut into cubes, plus extra for greasing
    Butter

    Butter

    butt-err

    Butter is made when lactic-acid producing bacteria are added to cream and churned to make an…

  • 115g dark muscovado sugar
  • 115g black treacle
  • 115g golden syrup
    Golden syrup

    Golden syrup

    goal-dun sir-rup

    Golden syrup is a clear, sparkling, golden-amber coloured, sweet

  • 250ml whole milk

    Milk

    mill-k

    One of the most widely used ingredients, milk is often referred to as a complete food. While cow…

  • 85g drained stem ginger, finely grated
    Ginger

    Ginger

    jin-jer

    Mainly grown in Jamaica, Africa, India, China and Australia, ginger is the root of the plant. It…

  • 1 egg
    Eggs

    Egg

    egg

    The ultimate convenience food, eggs are powerhouses of nutrition, packed with protein and a…

For the icing

  • 50g icing sugar, sifted
  • 1 tsp finely grated lemon zest
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to fan 160C/conventional 180C/gas 4. Butter and line an 18cm round, 7cm deep cake tin with greaseproof or parchment paper.

  2. Put the flour, bicarbonate of soda and all the spices into a large mixing bowl. Add the butter and rub it into the flour with your fingertips until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs.

  3. Put the sugar, treacle, syrup and milk in a medium saucepan and heat, gently stirring until the sugar has dissolved. Turn up the heat and bring the mixture to just below boiling point.

  4. Add the stem ginger to the flour mixture, then pour in the treacle mixture, stirring as you go with a wooden spoon. Break in the egg and beat until all the mixture is combined and it resembles a thick pancake batter. Pour this into prepared tin and bake for 50 minutes-1 hour, until a skewer pushed into the centre of the cake comes out fairly clean. Leave to cool completely in tin before turning cake out. (To freeze: wrap in greaseproof paper, then in cling film. Freeze for up to 1 month.)

  5. To make the icing, mix together icing sugar and lemon zest, then gradually add lemon juice until you have a smooth, slightly runny icing, adding more juice, if needed. Drizzle icing in a zig-zag pattern over surface of cake, turn cake around and drizzle again to create the cross-hatched finish (see below). Cake keeps for up to 2 weeks stored in an airtight container.

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Comments, questions and tips

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girasole
10th Mar, 2018
5.05
This is a very good ginger cake recipe and I have tried many. I made this in a loaf tin then stored wrapped in greaseproof paper for two days before serving. I did not bother with the icing as we prefer cakes without and there is really no need as it is a lovely sticky cake just as it is.
Ace Chef
5th Mar, 2018
5.05
I didn't make the icing as suggested but made a drizzly icing similar to lemon drizzle but made from icing sugar and water which I heated until clear. I chopped up another piece of stem ginger and added it to the icing mix and then spooned over the warm cake. It was super scrummy!
sharyn november's picture
sharyn november
22nd Feb, 2018
5.05
I love gingerbread, and this is one of the best recipes I've tried. (I am American, and sourced all the UK ingredients.) A perfect dense pudding/cake texture. I eat it alone or with a little lemon curd.
Glittermonkey
16th Feb, 2018
5.05
Absolutely superb recipe. I make double mixture and split the mixture between two 2 pound loaf tins and two 1 pound ones. I chop a whole small jar of stem ginger and mix in some flour to help stop it sinking. I then weigh the syrup from the jar and make up the weight with golden syrup. I always use 1% milk too. Yes the mixture on the stove curdles but the cake always turns out perfect. I have a fan oven and bake at 150 - this seems to stop them rising too quickly. The small cakes are ready in 40 mins and the large ones in 50 in my oven. I don’t ice it as it’s so gorgeous on its own.
summer_girl88
28th Jan, 2018
5.05
I've made this a few times now, usually at Christmas and I have to say that it is a winner. Really delicious and comforting - lovely with custard, ice cream or just double cream. So easy to make and always get positive feedback from guests.
Rachel_508
31st Dec, 2017
5.05
Absolutely delicious, particularly when sandwiched with a lemon curd filling. Doubled up recipe to make two cakes and split mixture between a 2lb loaf tin and a 20cm round tin. Loaf cake worked perfectly, round one ended up with a sinkhole in the middle big enough to lose a bus in. Next time I’ll use the loaf tin and make cupcakes with any left over mixture. Like many others I recommend using more icing sugar to make a thicker glacé icing rather than the thin glaze which just vanishes into the cake.
flauffy
12th Nov, 2017
5.05
This cake was a massive success!! I made it for a family and friends Sunday gathering and it was very well received. Made the recipe exactly as is apart from half muscovado and half light brown sugar, and semi-skimmed milk. Having looked at the picture I thought it would raise more, but despite this the texture was great. The ginger and lemon combo was perfect. Great for this time of year.
Molly0024
4th Nov, 2017
5.05
Great recipe, i made it for my granddads birthday and everyone loved it! Will definatly be making it again:)
VanillaSpice81's picture
VanillaSpice81
10th Oct, 2017
5.05
This cake is fairly easy to make, just allow extra time to prep so you can follow the steps slowly. It had a lovely sweet spiced gingery scent and is in my opinion the perfect texture and taste. I followed the recipe exactly. I used semi skimmed milk which was fine. Both times I've made the cake it rises nicely but does crack on top but I don't mind this as it looks rustic. You wouldn't miss the icing as the cake is delicious as it is, but I made a mix of normal icing sugar mixed with a little water and lemon curd and iced this on as shown in the picture. Cake didn't last long enough to see how it goes sticky and even those not keen on ginger loved it. Try it, it's perfect with tea!
VetBakes's picture
VetBakes
4th Jun, 2017
5.05
Absolutely delicious, followed the recipe exactly but without the icing. Went down a treat. Goes lovely and sticky on the second day of making but ours was mostly gone by that point!

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faithhampson
18th Oct, 2017
Would it work if I substitute in soya milk?
goodfoodteam's picture
goodfoodteam
20th Oct, 2017
Thanks for your question. We haven't tried this with soya milk. It will work but will change the flavour. If you are dairy-free you will also need to find a substitute for the butter. We also have a number of dairy-free alternatives on the website, including: https://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/1104663/blueberry-and-coconut-cake https://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/chocolate-orange-hazelnut-cake https://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/3229/yummy-scrummy-carrot-cake
belgium2970
14th Mar, 2017
Can I substitute golden syrup ?
goodfoodteam's picture
goodfoodteam
16th Mar, 2017
Thanks for your question. We haven't tested the recipe using an alternative to golden syrup and would suggest using this to guarantee best results. If you want to substitute with another syrup, results will vary due to different flavour and properties.
janjan87
9th Aug, 2016
Has anyone ever made cupcakes from this recipe? If so how many does it make and cooking time in a fan assisted gas oven? Thanks!
TheGirlWhoBakesCakes
10th Feb, 2016
Hi, Ive made this cake a few times. Its amazing, it tastes great, smells wonderful. Frankly its dangerous to dieters! Mine always sinks a bit though. Any suggestions as to how I can fix this? I measure my bicarb and level it off with a knife.....any help much appreciated. Thanks!
AngelaWB
10th Nov, 2015
Has anyone tried putting a dash of lemon in the mixture to react with the bicarb, just wondering if it would affect the flavour and help with the sinking in the centre issue?
goodfoodteam's picture
goodfoodteam
19th Nov, 2015
Oddly enough the gingerbread sinking could quite easily be due to too much baking soda, especially if mixed with an acid like lemon as it makes it very reactive. The mixture converts to carbon dioxide causing it to rise very quickly in the oven then sinking before the cake batter has time to set. A combination of soda and acid is perfect for scones however as they cook very quickly, and are a stiffer mixture. If the cake looks a bit wrinkled this is another sign that there is too much baking soda in the cake, so it is always a good idea to use a 5ml measuring spoon to ensure accuracy. For other tips, take care not to add too much treacle and syrup - oiling a metal spoon when taking them from the tin will help the baker be precise. It is also important to heat the oven in advance and make sure the cake is fully cooked right to the centre before removing from the oven. 
Gill87
19th Jul, 2014
5.05
My cake has cracked. The top looks like a rustic loaf of bread. I don't know how or if this will effect the end product as it's still in the oven. Can anyone shed any light on why the cake has cracked? Thank you!
Ralph
7th Jul, 2014
Mine curdles in the pan please can you help good food, otherwise it is an amazing cake which everyone loves

Pages

Rachel_508
31st Dec, 2017
5.05
Type of milk makes no difference whatsoever. I used 1% fat milk and it was fine. Use more icing sugar to make a thicker drizzle icing, the thin glaze just disappears into the cake.
aposwall
26th Dec, 2017
5.05
I chopped the stem ginger for the occasional lovely chunks of ginger in the cake which I enjoy. I used semi milk without any issues. Cake was baked for 45 mins which was perfect in my oven.
Intelligent.comment
12th Dec, 2016
Three tips: 1. Use 3x the amount of ginger 2. Don't overbake (i.e. I found 50 mins slightly too long) 3. Substitute milk for buttermilk (or milk and fresh lemon juice premixed for 10 mins) for a lighter texture Oh and use more icing sugar than suggested
debwoody21
28th Feb, 2016
I have just made a massive boo boo. I have added the wet ingredients to the flour without heating and melting sugar!!!!! doh, was to late to do anything about so have just had to mix and put in the oven,hope it comes out ok
AngelaWB
10th Nov, 2015
Use half cream and half milk, lovely. Also if you can't grate your stem ginger, use two sharp knives and chop it small, you'll taste it in the cake, but it's lovely. Nice hot with custard, lovely cold on it's own. Best made when you're home alone, then you don't have to share it!