Taking inspiration from the dessert I had at The Bunch of Grapes, a festive cheesecake made with Otley’s 08 ale, the next day I decided to put my baking hobby to practise, incorporating another great local beer as an ingredient. Bragging Rights (5.0%) is one of my favourite offerings from Brains Craft Brewery, a beer quite unique amongst those I’ve tasted; it infuses honey and spices to create a delicious golden ale, refreshingly both sweet and spicy – surely the perfect cake ingredient? I was keen to find out, adding the beer to melted butter and dark brown sugar so as to reduce it and intensify the flavour for baking. Not following any given recipe may well have backfired, but what came out of the oven was a fairly decent looking loaf cake and the kind of enticing smell that puts me in mind of tea time, which is when I chose to eat the cake, drizzled in simple icing. If I may say so myself, it was really lovely with a proper cuppa! The real test though was in taking it to the office for my colleagues to taste – I work for Brains after all. Thankfully the reception was a warm one, so I’ll definitely be making it again.
All you need is:
- 100ml Bragging Rights (Brains Craft Brewery)
- 200g butter (I always use salted butter in cakes, but I’m sure unsalted would be fine)
- 2 large eggs
- 2 tablespoons runny honey
- 100g soft dark brown sugar
- 200g self raising flour
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- 1 ½ teaspoons mixed spice
- 100g icing sugar
On medium heat, melt the butter, honey and sugar in a pan until the sugar has dissolved.
Add the Bragging Rights, and heat until bubbling – remove mixture from the heat after 1 minute and allow to cool.
Sift the flour, baking powder and mixed spice into a large bowl.
Beat the eggs into the cooled butter and beer mixture, and then add mixture to the flour, stirring until all is incorporated.
Pour the mixture into a greased and lined 900g loaf tin and bake in an oven pre-heated to 160°C for 50 minutes.
Allow the cake to cool in the tin for 5 minutes before turning out onto a wire rack to cool completely.
Mix the icing sugar with just a few drops of cold water, so it is loose but not watery. Using a spoon, drizzle the icing over the cooled cake. Allow icing to harden, then slice to serve.
Give it a go and tweet us your pics!