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Hairy Recipe: Spiced Gingerbread

300 g plain flour

2 tbsp ground ginger (or according to taste – this makes for quite a hot cake)

½ tsp cayenne (or more if you want it very hot)

½ tsp cinnamon

½ tsp ground allspice

¼ tsp mace

Generous pinch cloves

150g butter

125g dark brown muscovado sugar

150g golden syrup

50g syrup from the jar of stem ginger (optional – replace with more golden syrup or honey if not using stem ginger)

200g black treacle

250 ml milk

2 large eggs, lightly beaten

1 heaped tsp bicarbonate of soda

The drained and washed contents of a jar of stem ginger (optional), very finely chopped


Preheat the oven to 170C. Line a 30cm x 20xm tin (we use a straight sided brownie tin).

Sieve the flour into a large bowl along with the spices and whisk lightly to combine.

Put the butter, sugar, syrups and treacle into a saucepan. To make it easier to spoon out the syrup and treacle, oil a spoon first – it will then just slide off. Melt everything together over a gentle heat.

Remove from the heat and whisk in the milk, bicarbonate of soda and eggs. Gradually add the contents of the saucepan to the flour, making sure everything is well combined. You will end up with a very wet, pourable batter. Stir through the stem ginger.

Bake in the oven for between 45 minutes and an hour. When the edges have pulled back slightly from the side of the tin and it is springy to touch, it will be done.

Cool in the tin for half an hour then turn out onto a rack. If you can wrap and keep for a few days before eating – its stickiness will develop as it matures.


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