I really do love a nice, sticky gingerbread loaf cake. There’s just something so comforting and old fashioned about it. And personally, I can’t think of any other bake that goes better with a cup of tea!
Like most gingerbread, this is best made in advance – keep it wrapped (uniced) for up for 2-3 days and you’ll be rewarded with a beautifully sticky, moist ginger cake.
Treacle and golden syrup is the secret to making the best gingerbread – as well as a generous amount of ground ginger and some chopped crystallised ginger for an extra kick of flavour! I go through so much treacle in the Winter months I’m actually considering buying it in bulk. As well as making gingerbread, I use it to make these spiced ginger cookies, treacle scones (recipe coming soon!) and I swirl it through my porridge.
You can leave the gingerbread plain if you wish by all means – but adding either a fresh, zingy lemon icing or a tangy orange cream cheese icing really takes this cake to a new level. I love both options, so I tend to go for whatever takes my fancy at the time. If I choose the lemon icing, I like to decorate the top with chopped crystallised ginger. Lemon and ginger complement each other perfectly!
This is an updated post with new photographs. Originally posted January 2014.
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Gingerbread Loaf Cake
- 250 g plain flour
- 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
- 1 tbsp ground ginger
- Zest of one lemon
- 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 120 g butter
- 110 g treacle
- 110 g golden syrup
- 110 g dark muscavado sugar
- 250 ml milk
- 1 egg beaten
- 25 g Crystallised or stem ginger finely chopped
ORANGE CREAM CHEESE ICING
- 125 g full fat cream cheese
- 50 g very soft unsalted butter
- 275 g icing sugar sifted
- Finely grated zest of one small orange
- 1/4 tsp vanilla extract
- 100 g icing sugar
- Juice of half or one lemon
- Chopped crystallised ginger to decorate optional
- Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/Gas Mark 4.Grease and line a 2lb loaf tin.
- Sift the flour, bicarbonate of soda, spices and lemon zest together in a large bowl.
- Rub in the butter until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. Stir in the lemon zest, sugar and chopped crystallised ginger.
- In a small pan over a low heat, melt the treacle, syrup and milk. Remove from the heat and let it cool to room temperature before stirring in the egg.
- Pour into the flour mixture, whisking thoroughly until no lumps remain and you have a smooth batter. Pour this batter into the lined tin and bake for 55-65 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean.
- Let the gingerbread cool completely in the tin.
- For the lemon icing:Sift the icing sugar into a medium sized bowl. Add enough lemon juice to make a thick but pourable icing. Pour over the cold cake and top with the remaining crystallised ginger, if using.
- For the orange cream cheese icing:Beat the cream cheese, butter, orange zest and vanilla extract together until creamy. Beat in the icing sugar until smooth. Spread over the top of the cake.
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