Saturday, December 21, 2013

Christmas spice cake in a jar

Photo by Steve Shanahan

This version of a pre-packaged cake mix is a great Christmas gift. It is easy to assemble and is a practical and helpful gift to give to busy people. The only additions needed to complete the cake mix are the wet ingredients.

To assemble the cake mix in the jar, use a medium sized jar that has been sterilised, by boiling in a saucepan of water for fifteen minutes. The jar should have an airtight seal to keep the cake ingredients fresh. The ingredients you will need are below.

2 cups self raising flour
3/4 cup dark brown sugar
1 tsp ground cloves
1 tsp ground Dutch cinnamon
1 tsp ground ginger
½ tsp grated nutmeg
½ cup dutch cocoa
pinch of salt

Measure and sift the flour and salt and then in a separate bowl, measure and sift the cocoa and spices together.

Starting with the sugar, layer the ingredients according to their density with the heaviest at the bottom.

Press down on the ingredients as you layer them, so they remain in their layers for presentation. As you place each layer in the jar, brush down the sides with a dry pastry brush.

Then add the sifted flour in its layer topping with the cocoa and spices.

Give the sides of the jar a final brush down, then seal and decorate the jar with a label and ribbon.

To provide the method to make the cake, I printed the instructions below on a piece of thick paper and rolled it up in a scroll and tied it onto the lid with the ribbon.

Avoid shaking the jar to keep the ingredients in their layers.


Christmas Spice Loaf  

All dry ingredients have been prepared in correct quantities for you to easily prepare the Christmas Spice loaf. You will only need a bowl and a wooden spoon to mix the cake. The ingredients contain no artificial colours or preservatives and the only extra ingredients you will need to make the cake are

·       cup golden syrup
·       1 cup of milk and
·       1 cup of water.


Preheat oven to 180C. Grease a 23 centimetre x 10 centimetre loaf tin. Dump the entire jar of cake mixture ingredients into a large mixing bowl, stirring with a wooden spoon to combine. Add the milk, water and golden syrup and mix to a smooth paste. The mixture should fall in a ribbon from the spoon. Pour the mixture into the greased loaf tin, and slam on the bench top to remove bubbles.  Reduce oven temperature to 150C and bake for approximately 45 minutes to 1 hour. Insert a skewer to come out clean to check if it is cooked.

This cake keeps best in an airtight container for about one week and gets better with age.