Fragrant with spices, orange zest and rich cocoa, this dense, sticky loaf is topped with indulgent chocolate ganache and shards of honeycomb for a fabulous winter weekend treat.
1 cup golden syrup
½ cup water
75 grams butter
½ cup packed brown sugar
finely grated zest 1 orange
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups plain flour
2 tablespoons good-quality cocoa
½ teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 tablespoons ground ginger
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon ground mixed spice
75 grams butter
250 grams dark chocolate (68% cocoa), chopped
pinch sea salt
Honeycomb (Cinder Toffee)
1 cup caster sugar
5 tablespoons golden syrup
2 tablespoons water
2 teaspoons baking soda
Lightly grease a 5-cup capacity loaf tin and fully line with baking paper.
Preheat the oven to 160°C fan bake.
Put the golden syrup, water, butter, brown sugar, zest and vanilla in a saucepan over a medium-low heat. Stir to melt the sugar and butter then remove from the heat. Cool for 15 minutes.
Sift all the dry ingredients together into a large bowl. Add the cooled syrup and mix until smooth, ensuring there are no pockets of flour in the batter.
Pour into the prepared tin and bake for 25 minutes. Remove from the oven and cover with foil to prevent overbrowning. Return to oven and bake for a further 45 minutes or until
a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Cool in the tin. The cake is best made at least one day ahead of eating.
Chocolate ganache: Heat the cream and butter in a saucepan and when just below the boil, remove from the heat and stir in the chocolate and salt until smooth and glossy. Leave at room temperature until thick enough to spread over the loaf.
Honeycomb (Cinder toffee): Lightly grease a baking tray and line with baking paper.
Put the sugar, golden syrup and water in a medium saucepan and bring to the boil, stirring to combine. Cook at a steady simmer for 6 minutes. Take off the heat and whisk in the baking soda. It will immediately bubble and puff up. Quickly pour onto the baking paper. Cool for two hours. Store in an airtight container until ready to decorate the loaf.
To serve: Top the loaf with the chocolate ganache and sprinkle with roughly chopped honeycomb. Makes 1 loaf.