Sunday, 18 May 2008

Rum cake

While pretty little frou-frou cupcakes are lovely, sometimes you just want a slab of something unfussy and delicious. This cake is for such times. It doesn’t look stunning but packs a punch in flavour.

I am always drawn to recipes were a syrup is poured over the cake straight from the oven – it’s a technique used in many lemon cakes and makes a cake moist and extra tasty. This recipe involves pouring a buttery rum syrup over the cake – as soon as I read that bit in the recipe the page was marked and I knew the cake would be made!

The syrup starts out in a saucepan (how can it fail with ingredients of rum, sugar and butter?):

Pierce the hot cake with a cocktail stick and then spoon over the syrup:

The recipe requires a mid-to-dark rum. It would work with white rum but the colour of the cake would be paler. Personally, with golden and dark rums readily available I don’t know why anyone would use white rum for anything!

The cut slices show how moist the rum syrup makes the cake:

For the cake:
200g unsalted butter, at room temperature
250g light brown sugar
2 eggs, beaten
250g plain flour
½ teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon ground allspice (NOTE: allspice, not mixed spice!)
3-4 tablespoons golden or dark rum

For the syrup:
50g caster sugar
3 tablespoons golden or dark rum
40g unsalted butter, cut into small cubes

Optional: light brown sugar sprinkled on top of the loaf.

How to make:

- Preheat the oven to 180°C/fan oven 160°C/350°F/Gas mark 4.
- Line a 900g loaf tin with baking paper.
- Start by making the cake. Beat the butter and sugar together in a bowl until pale and creamy.
- Beat in the eggs one at a time, add a little of the flour if the mixture starts to curdle.
- Fold in the flour, baking powder, allspice and 3 tablespoons of the rum. If the mix looks a little dry add a further tablespoon of rum.
- Spoon into the loaf tin and bake for 50-55 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean. Mine took 55 minutes.
- When the cake is about 5 minutes away from being cooked, start making the syrup. Put the sugar, rum, and butter in a small saucepan and add 2 tablespoons of water. Gently heat until the sugar is dissolved and you have a light golden syrup.
- Using a cocktail stick, prick the top of the cake. Don’t go right the way through the cake.
- Spoon the syrup over the top of the cake. Do this gradually so that it sinks in rather than pools on the surface.
- Sprinkle some light brown sugar on the surface of the cake – this is optional and just gives a nice crunch to the top.
- Leave the cake to cool in the tin for approximate 20 minutes before removing and allowing to cool completely on a wire rack.
- I like this cake simply on its own with a cup of tea. However, you can serve it with whipped cream and fruit for a lovely dessert.
- Bask in glory at the wonderful thing you have made.
- Eat.


glamah16 said...

Now your talking! Rum Cake.Oh Yeah.

Rosie said...

Oh rum cake I'm with you all the way on this excellent bake - wonderful :)

Rosie x