Chocolate Chunk Gingerbread Recipe
One of my favourite vintage recipes is Gingerbread. My maternal Grandmother’s is a long remembered treat and a fond taste of my childhood. But just when you think something couldn’t get anymore amazing, up steps Chocolate Chunk Gingerbread, and changes everything.
When I saw this recipe on Nigella.com, I knew I had to give it a try, but I didn’t think it would be quite as delicious as it is. And it really is. Chocolate Chunk Gingerbread is a bloody great big slab of soft, spiced cake with a chocolate in every mouthful. The icing is more of a glaze and optional, but in my mind, totally necessary. The spice doesn’t overpower this bake, it’s subtle, not too sweet and beyond *eek* moist. It just gets better as the days go on, if it gets the chance to. This total crowd-pleaser is definitely one to whip out if you have a crowd round for trick or treating, fireworks or a bonfire night celebration.
Just when you think an old classic can’t get any better, Chocolate Chunk Gingerbread comes along and takes you by surprise. I am now determined to make this on a weekly basis and to hell with the havoc it will play with my pre Christmas diet.
All good winter baking produce for this ingredients line up. I had a rather elderly tin of black treacle which seems none the worse off for the amount of time it had spent hidden at the back of my cupboard. Nigella suggested using chocolate chips but I decided to chop some chocolate, as I loved the idea of big chunky bits with every bite of soft cake. But use chips if that’s what you have to hand.
Make a start by roughly lining a large baking tray with greaseproof paper. Mine was 30cm x 20cm x 5cm, this does make a bloody great big cake, but you will want to eat it all.
Pre heat your oven to 150 degrees fan assisted then take a large saucepan. Measure in the butter, dark brown sugar, caster sugar, golden syrup, black treacle, ground cloves, cinnamon and ginger.
Heat this on the hob over a low flame until the butter and sugar have melted. Stir well.
Whisk in the milk and the eggs until smooth.
In a small bowl, mix the bicarbonate of soda with 2 tablespoons of warm water then whisk that in too.
Finally fold in the plain flour and cocoa powder. I would recommend sieving this, because I didn’t as was feeling lazy, and it was a little lumpy. So don’t be as tardy as me please. Beat/whisk the mixture well until smooth.
Pour this divine tasting and smelling batter into your lined tin. I sprinkled the top of mine with my chocolate chunks, as I didn’t want them to sink to the bottom. But it’s up to you, do stir them in if you prefer.
Bake this mammoth cake for around 35 to 45 minutes. Mine was done at 35 but it’s a little dependent on your oven here. The cake is ready when it’s firm to the touch, smelling amazing and a skewer comes out clean when poked in the middle.
As you can see my chocolate did not sink to the bottom and positively stayed proudly on the top. This does make for a slightly cellulitey finish, but I’m happy with that.
While the cake cools crack on with the icing.
Melt the butter and ginger ale over a low heat on the stove until just melted. Now, get the bloody sieve out of the sink, as you need it again for the icing sugar and cocoa. You really don’t want this to be lumpy so it’s worth the effort. Sieve it into the butter/ginger ale mix and whisk until smooth.
Once your cake is cool, pour the icing all over the top of the gingerbread. I didn’t wait for mine to cool as I was desperate to photograph it before it got dark, so it did sink into the cake, but again, my baking has always had a rustic charm *crap looking* side to it.
Let the icing cover the giant slab of cake then leave it to set for as long as you can bear.
Serve this divine, lightly spiced cake in bloody great big slabs. It keeps beautifully in an airtight tin so don’t feel you’ve got to eat it all in one go. Unless you want to, no judgement here.
This is super rich, super delicious and any word other than *eek* moist. I know this looks like a lot of cake, but it will get eaten, I can guarantee. And if it doesn’t bring it round and I’ll happily see it off.
Chocolate Chunk Gingerbread Recipe
Serves a crowd
You will just need bowls, a saucepan and a lined baking tray
125g dark brown sugar
2 tablespoons caster sugar
200g golden syrup
200g black treacle
¼ teaspoon ground cloves
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1¼ teaspoons bicarbonate of soda
2 tablespoons warm water
275g plain flour
200g chocolate, chopped into chunks, or use chocolate chips
250g icing sugar
1 heaped tablespoon cocoa
60ml ginger ale
Pre heat your oven to 150 degrees fan assisted and roughly line a large baking tin, around 30cm x 20cm x 5cm with baking paper.
Take a large saucepan and add the butter, brown sugar, caster sugar, golden syrup, black treacle, cloves, cinnamon and ginger. Pop on the stove and heat over a low flame until the whole lot has melded together. Stir well to mix. Take off the heat.
In a small bowl, mix the bicarbonate of soda with 2 tablespoons of warm water and mix.
Pour the milk into the saucepan of sugar, etc, whisk, then whisk in the eggs and bicarb mixture. Finally, sift in the flour and cocoa and beat well, until smooth. Pour the mixture into your lined tin. Sprinkle over the chocolate chunks or chips then put in the oven for 35 to 40 minutes.
The cooked gingerbread will be firm to the touch, smelling amazing and a skewer will come out clean when poked in the middle. Leave to cool.
For the icing, heat the ginger ale and butter on the hob until the butter has just melted. Sieve in the icing sugar and cocoa and whisk until smooth. Pour over the cooled cake and leave until set.
Serve in huge squares. This will keep well, covered, in an airtight tin for a good 3 to 4 days.
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