Last week I went to a Clandestine Cake Club event in Reading. This was our first event for a few months as everyone had been busy over the summer. The theme was cocktails and the organiser of our group chose a cocktail bar (Cerise at The Forbury) as the venue for our cakey get together, this meant we had lots of fun sampling all of our boozy cakes along with some delicious cocktails. Apologies for the photos, the lighting in the cocktail bar was not good for getting a good shot and I didn’t have time to get the camera out at home before heading out for the evening. We were sat at a shiny table with an overhead light and I’ve just realised you can see my reflection in this picture as I took the photo.
Once the theme had been announced I knew that I wanted to use blackberries to attempt to recreate a fabulous cocktail I had at a friend’s hen party in London last year. Due to being a permanently skint student I hadn’t planned on staying out for the cocktails after a meal that night, but my other friend persuaded me by offering to buy me a cocktail and after much deliberation over the menu (my first time in a proper cocktail bar and I was amazed by the number available), I chose the bramble cocktail. For those not in the know, this is delicious cocktail made with blackberry liqueur, gin, lemon juice and sugar syrup. You may remember that I froze a batch of stewed blackberries a little while ago as I didn’t know what to do with the bounty I foraged from my local park. I defrosted the stewed blackberries to use for this cake, and to top my porridge for a few days afterwards (minus any gin of course).
The cake is flavoured with gin and lemon, filled with stewed blackberries and decorated with a gin, lemon and blackberry spiked icing. Not the booziest cake in the world, around half the amount of gin compared to my recent elderflower gin drizzle cake, but very delicious. The cake is lovely and moist and the icing is very zingy, I just wish blackberry season hadn’t ended so I could bake this again.
For the cake:
225g caster sugar
225g unsalted butter
225g self raising flour
zest 1 lemon finely grated
For the filling:
4-5 dessertspoonfuls of stewed blackberries with vanilla
For the icing:
300g icing sugar
juice of half a lemon
1.5 tsp juice from stewed blackberries
- Preheat the oven to 180C and grease and line 2 x 8 inch sandwich tins.
- Cram together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy then beat in the eggs one at a time followed by the lemon zest and the gin. Fold in the flour then divide the batter between the 2 tins and bake for 20-25 minutes until risen, golden and an inserted skewer comes out clean. Leave the cakes to cool in the tin for a couple of minutes then turn out onto a wire rack and leave until cold.
- When the cakes are cold, place one layer on a plate and then spread over the stewed blackberries and sandwich the second layer on top.
- Sieve the icing sugar into a mixing bowl and add the lemon juice and 25ml of the gin to start with. Mix to a thick paste consistency (add the rest of the gin if it is too stiff) and then mix in the blackberry juice, don’t worry if a few seeds end up in there, and you should get a lovely pinky purple colour.
- Spread the icing thickly over the cake and leave to set for about an hour before serving,
I didn’t choose a bramble cocktail at cake club, instead I went for something different and purposefully not sweet so I wouldn’t completely overload on sugar. I went for a French blade which was made with bison grass vodka, absinthe and elderflower cordial and it was rather potent!
For more boozy cake inspiration have a look at these recipes:
A few more cocktail inspired cakes from the blogosphere:
Chocolate Baileys cupcakes with chocolate baileys buttercream icing – from Maison Cupcake
Cider punch drizzle loaf cakes – from Feeding Boys & Firefighter
Peach bellini cake – from United Cakedom which I enjoyed at cake club last week
Strawberry daiquiri traybake – from I’d Much Rather Bake Than…
Pina Colada Swiss roll – from Supergolden Bakes