This is a traditional gingerbread recipe - one of those cakes where the top gets sticky over time! I added some chopped macadamia nuts and dried cranberries to use up supplies approaching the 'best-before' date. I'm happy to use dried fruit past it's best, but nuts can go stale quite quickly. I've been using this recipe for over 40 years know, but haven't found anything better. The amount of black treacle can be reduced to make a lighter cake, without the characteristic bitterness, as long as it is replaced by the same weight of golden syrup. The total weight of the two syrups must be 230g
60g light muscovado sugar
170g black treacle
60g golden syrup
220g plain flour
1 teaspoon mixed spice
3 teaspoons ground ginger
1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
50g macadamia nuts, roughly chopped
50g dried cranberries
Preheat oven to 150C and line a deep 20cm(8") square cake tin with baking parchment.
In a large saucepan, heat the butter, sugar, and syrups until the fat has melted. Remove from the heat, add the milk and cool until lukewarm.
Beat the eggs and blend into the melted mixture.
Sift the flour, spices and bicarbonate of soda into a large bowl and add the liquid. Stir briskly to combine, but do not beat. Lastly stir in the fruit and nuts.
Transfer the batter to the baking tin and bake for about 60 minutes, until a test probe comes out clean.
Cool in the tin and preferably leave for a day before cutting.
I don't think the addition of fruit and nuts contributed much to the flavour, as the spiciness of the gingerbread and the bitterness of treacle is so strong, but the nuts added a nice crunch to the texture.