Wednesday, 13 November 2013

Rhubarb & Ginger Jam Cake

This gorgeously dark spiced cake is based on a Rombauer Cake, which is a German cake made typically with blackberry or raspberry jam. The use of dark brown sugar and cinnamon makes it a perfect warming treat for this time of year, and the Rhubarb & Ginger Jam I used compliments the spices wonderfully. I also added cardamom for extra interest, toasted flaked almonds for texture and drizzled with a brown sugar icing which is so good I can't think of a word that quite covers it!

I made this recipe card for my cake using PicMonkey, which is an online photo editor. I had so much fun making it and there are literally a ton of tools, graphics and options you can play around with. How awesome would it be to make up a set of recipe cards and give them out as a Christmas gift?! If a friend or relative has been asking for a recipe or loves something you bake, you could make them a card, and it would be such a sweet and personal gift. PicMonkey is free to use, but you can pay a monthly fee for extra features. I followed this tutorial by fellow blogger Brandie to make the recipe cards. You can also use PicMonkey to edit non-baking related photos.

This is my final (sad face!) recipe using the amazing jams I got sent from Scottish preserves manufacturer Mackays. I have so far made a delicious Lemon, Blueberry & Blackberry Swirl Loaf with their Blueberry & Blackcurrant preserve, tasty Spiced Jammy Flapjacks with their Strawberry Preserve with Champagne, and gooey Chocolate & Marmalade Cheesecake Brownies with their Dundee Orange Marmalade. The final jam I had was Rhubarb & Ginger - great flavours for this time of year!

I made this cake to take along to my most recent Clandestine Cake Club meeting which took place at The Albert Club in West Didsbury. The theme was 'Classic Matches' and I thought Rhubarb & Ginger was not only a classic flavour match, but with winter here the perfect comforting and warming flavours you want right now. Here are the cakes that we had at the meeting...

Janette made this amazing Caramel & Chocolate Cake which had Daim bar sprinkled all over it. I had three pieces, and another the next day, suffice to say I liked it a lot!!

Helen made this fabulous Chocolate & Mint Cake with mint matchstick decoration.

I loved Elaine's Ginger & Lime Cake, the lime jam in the middle was particularly tasty.

Claire's Chocolate & Orange Cake was so moist and delicious with just the right amount of orange zing!

My friend Beth made a Lemon & Lime Loaf Cake. She candied the peel on top herself and the cake inside was light and moist.

Owen made a Gin & Tonic cake with a recipe he found in the Big Issue magazine, and it went down very well!

 Our organiser Avril made this delicious Lemon & Ginger Cake using a ring bundt pan.

Janice made this delicious Marmalade & Ginger Cake.

Sadly, my cake did not turn out how I wanted - it didn't rise and despite tasting really good, it was far to dense and close textured. I had a lot of kind words from my fellow cake clubbers about the flavour and there wasn't much left at the end, so that was a relief! But I couldn't leave it at that and I had to perfect the recipe. So I changed it and tried again the next day!

I started by creaming together 215g dark brown sugar and 85g butter.

I then whisked in 2 eggs, 1 tsp vanilla extract and 3 tbsp sour cream. Folded in 195g plain flour, 1 1/2 tsp baking powder, 1 tsp cinnamon, 1/2 tsp ground ginger and 1/2 tsp ground cardamom. For instructions on how to grind cardamom pods see my post Chai Spiced Rolls. If you are not a cardamom fan, feel free to leave it out.

Finally, I added a full jar of Mackays Rhubarb & Ginger preserve and stirred until just mixed, I wanted there to still be sections of jam within the sponge once it was baked. I poured the mixture into a lined cake tin.

I baked it for 50 minutes on 180C/350F/Gas Mark 4. It looked like a much better bake this time!

Whilst the cake was cooling I made the brown sugar icing. This stuff is probably the most delicious icing ever to have existed. I pretty much went weak at the knees when I tasted it! This would be beyond divine on pancakes. You make it by heating 80g dark brown sugar, 40g butter, 2 tbsp milk, a pinch of cinnamon and a pinch of salt on a medium low heat for about 5 minutes. Leave it to cool and it will thicken up noticably.

I drizzled it fairly liberally all over the cake. Then sprinkled some toasted flaked almonds on top. You could use another type of nuts if you prefer, or some candied ginger.

Finally success - a gorgeous moist cake inside! I am sorry to my fellow cake clubbers that they didn't get to try out my much improved version of this cake. It tastes great and I loved the hint of cardamom, and the jam running through the cake. This would be amazing with hot custard on a cold evening.

print recipe

Rhubarb & Ginger Jam Cake
  • 295g Dark brown sugar
  • 125g Butter
  • 2 Eggs
  • 1 tsp Vanilla extract
  • 3 tbsp Sour cream
  • 195g Plain flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp Baking Powder
  • 1 tsp + a pinch Cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp Ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp Ground cardamom
  • 1 jar of Mackays Rhubarb & Ginger
  • 2 tbsp Milk
  • A pinch of Salt
  • A handful of Toasted flaked almonds
Cream together 215g of the dark brown sugar and 85g of the butterWhisk in the eggs, vanilla extract and sour cream. Then fold in the plain flour, baking powder, the 1 tsp of cinnamon, ground ginger and ground cardamomAdd the jar of Mackays Rhubarb & Ginger preserve and stir until just mixed. Pour the mixture into a lined cake tinBake it for 50 minutes on 180C/350F/Gas Mark 4Whilst the cake is cooling make the brown sugar icing. Heat 80g of the dark brown sugar, 40g of the butter, milk, the pinch of cinnamon and salt on a medium low heat for about 5 minutes. Leave it to cool and it will thicken up noticablyDrizzle it all over the cake. Then sprinkle some toasted flaked almonds on top


  1. This cake looks GORGEOUS Kat! Perfect combo. Loving Janettes offering too - Daim bars are my nemesis!!

    1. Thank you! Yes her cake was rather fabulous, definitely the star of the meeting!

  2. Another delicious cake recipe from you and I will definitely be using Pic monkey ! x

    1. Thank you! I had so much fun making the recipe card and I'm really pleased with how it looks, I definitely recommend it.

  3. Absolutely gorgeous sounding cake! I love cardamom in cake - have you tried the cardamom loaf from the Hummingbird Cake Days book? Well done for having the patience to perfect the recipe aswell, I probably would have thrown a strop and given up. Have bookmarked this one, sounds like a great Autumnal recipe and I have GOT to try that icing!

    1. Thanks Kim! I haven't tried the cardamom loaf no, I only recently discovered cardamom, this is literally my second recipe with it in. Oh I can never leave a recipe unconquered! I have to get it right! I can't rest easy until it's done. You do have to try the icing, seriously, it's so good it should be illegal!

  4. Your cake looks great Kat - as do all the others at the Cake Club! Great theme too..

    1. Thanks Stuart, yes an interesting theme and interesting how a lot of the same flavours shown up but with different pairings!

  5. Goodness what a fabulous range of gorgeous cakes and flavours! I don't think I'd know where to start... And your cake combines such classic flavours- I've no doubt it was a huge hit!

    1. Thanks Kate! Yes despite the bad bake, my cake was a hit at the meeting! The second bake also went down very well with my colleagues, you just can't beat the mix of flavours!