First I have to share this fabulous trick I saw on Pinterest the other day. I ALWAYS forget to get the butter out of the fridge the night before I bake so I usually bung it in the microwave for 20 seconds but then you end up with some of it melted and some still hard. Well, I saw this and it’s changed my baking life. Just pop the block of butter in a bowl of warm (not hot) water for 20 minutes and it’ll be soft and pliable for you. Genius!
So, this is Nigella’s Christmassed- up version of her Spruced-up Vanilla Cake, what makes it a spruce cake is the tin you use. I don’t have one of them, but I do have these fabulous ones.
The recipe I have linked to doesn’t include the instructions in her book but basically you replace half of the vanilla with a couple of teaspoons of ground cinnamon, 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves and a couple of teaspoons of ground ginger.
It’s really yummy. Mine cooked over the top of the tins (it was like lava from a volcano – see pics below) so I was able to scrape some off and try it before I popped them in the freezer (one for Christmas tea and one for Boxing Day tea). They just need a dusting of icing sugar and serving with some boozy whipped cream. Yummy!