Sunday, 5 November 2017

Enchanted Whimsical Wonderland Cake ft. Fentimans' Ginger Beer

Today I am sharing with you a super exciting Autumn / Winter baking post in collaboration with Fentimans Ltd. You will probably have seen my other collaboration posts that I have previously written for Fentimans; you can check out my oh-so sophisticated drinks guides on their fruity and floral botanical drinks in my recent summer drinks guide and my Getting Fizzy With Fentimans post on mixing cocktails (alcoholic and non-alcoholic variations created!). Today I am going to show you how I used their simply divine non-alcoholic Ginger Beer to add a bit of Autumnal spicy warmth and aromatic flavour sophistication to my ginger flavour Enchanted Wonderland cake and accompanying ginger cookies! Get ready to be transported into Christmas through the medium of baking!

I personally love baking (had you guessed?!) and I really like making a mix of traditional bakes and modern ones, so if I see the opportunity to combine the classic, in this case ginger cake, with the modern, a whimsical wonderland design, then I'm all for it! Below I've included lots of photos and a 'how to' guide on how I've made this really rather fun cake! It is quite an intricate design, with all the biscuit leaves and woodland creatures and it does feature lots of different (and deliciously gingery!) elements, but the effort is so worth it as what you can create is really fabulous. As it is ornately decorated and seasonally fitting, I think it would make a really lovely centrepiece for a table at a dinner party or it would also be a beautiful birthday cake for someone who celebrates their special day during the Autumn or Winter months.

Shop the full Fentimans drinks range online here

To shop Fentimans' botanical Ginger Beer and their full soft drinks range, click here
Winter Wonderland Cake & Biscuits Recipe & 'How To'
Kit that you need
weighing scales
a large mixing bowl
wooden spoon
baking paper
baking tray(s)
a round cake tin
an electric whisk (optional)
Cake Ingredients
Self-raising flour
100ml Fentimans' Ginger Beer
225g butter or margarine
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
2 teaspoon of ground ginger
1 teaspoon of mixed spice
1.5 teaspoons of ground cinnamon
30g of finely chopped crystallised stem ginger
4 x Free-range or Organic eggs
4 tablespoons of semi-skimmed milk
225g golden sugar
pinch of baking powder
Note: this recipe makes one very large cake, but if you are making a birthday cake for lots of people to share, you can simply make twice the volume and bake two cakes to be sandwiched together with butter cream once they've cooled.
1. Cream together the margarine or butter (which should be at room temperature), extract and sugar.
2. Gradually add in the beaten eggs one at a time, along with a bit of the flour each time, until they are all combined. Add some Fentimans Ginger Beer at this stage too.
3. Now add in the remaining dry ingredients, including the baking powder, ground ginger, crystallised stem ginger and the rest of the fizzy botanical hit of the Fentimans Ginger Beer (the fizziness should help make the cake light as it'll add lots of fizz bubbles!). Gently combine, so that you don't knock out all of the air which is going to make the cake fluffy!
4. In a greased or lined baking tin, place the mix and bake on a moderate oven at about 180 degrees centigrade for about 45 minutes - 1 hour or until the top is golden and the centre is baked through (check this by putting a cocktail stick / knife in the middle - if it comes out clean, the cake is baked! Yay!)
5. Once the cake is out of the oven, leave to fully cool before assembling

Ginger Snap Biscuit Ingredients
250g Self-raising flour
4 tablespoons of Fentimans' Ginger Beer

125g butter or margarine

1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
1.5 teaspoons of ground ginger
1 x Free-range or Organic egg
75g golden sugar
45g golden syrup (for the snap!)
pinch of baking powder

1. Mix together the butter and sugar, extract, and ground ginger.

2. Add in and mix all of the other ingredients, until you have formed a cookie dough which can be rolled out on a floured surface. If you can't roll it, then add a bit more flour so it holds its shape a bit better.

3. Roll out the dough until it is about 1cm in thickness and press out the cookies in all their winter wonderland goodness!

4. Bake in a moderate oven at 180 - 200 degrees centigrade for about 10 - 15 minutes until they are golden.

I decorated the wise owl cookies using chocolate buttons, chips, pecans and almonds for the features!
For the frosting
125g butter
250g icing sugar
half a teaspoon of vanilla extract
3 teaspoons of Fentimans' Ginger Beer
1. Mix together the butter and icing sugard until they begin to thouroughly combine.
2. Add the Fentimans Ginger Beer to the mix until it reaches a good pipeable / spreadable consistency, before using to assemble the winter wonderland cake!

Decorative note: adding finely chopped pistachio and pecan nuts helps the forest floor to look more authentic, pus the light sprinkle addition of cocoa powder and then icing sugar dusting looks really pretty and winter-esque!
My favourite things about this bake of course include the delicious aromatic ginger flavour, which is really enhanced by the addition of Fentimans' Ginger Beer. I think using beverages like this in baking is a really unique, experimental and interesting thing to do and it added a flavour dimension that really made the cake taste luxuriously gingery! Although I often choose to have my cake with a cup or two of tea, a nicely chilled glass of Fentimans' Ginger Beer on ice I feel would actually work really well and compliment it, as it just draws together all that Autumnal spicy flavour that is the running theme of this dessert. Well worth a try! I also love how quaint and all together Autumn / Winter it looks with the additions of woodland creatures and trees on the cake / forest floor! Delicious and also pretty, the perfect combination of qualities for a cake in my opinion!

An edible and quintessentially whimsical winter wonderland scene - don't you think it feels a bit more like Christmas is coming now?! I know I do!
Keep up to date with Fentimans on Facebook, Twitter & Instagram 
I loved baking this whimsical wonderland and I would like to see if you give it a go too! Tag me on my Instagram if you do! Have you tried any of Fentimans' Ginger Beer before and how did you best enjoy it, mixed with a tipple or chilled, just as it is? Let me know! Bilgi x 
*This blog post is written in collaboration with Fentimans Ltd. All views remain honest and my own.*

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