Ginger and Lime Loaf

Ginger and Lime Loaf

When I came home from university a few weeks ago for the summer there were many strange things I brought back with me. A packet of fake blood that never got used at Halloween, a variety of cheap dresses that I’d picked up in charity shops over the year, but also quite a lot of food that I couldn’t bring myself to bin before I left. Amongst this bounty were four limes, bought to jazz up drinks in the final week, but sadly never used. So back at home, with a clean and well equipped kitchen to use for the first time in months, I set about thinking how I’d make the best of this fruit.

Despite flirting with the idea of a key lime cheesecake, I settled on making something cakier in the end, and after a bit of googling decided that ginger and lime seemed like a nice twist on conventional flavours, as well as being perfect for the sudden heatwave we’ve had here in the UK. Though this loaf is quite dense, the zesty kick of the lime and ginger lift it out of any heaviness that you might expect and the combination is a lot livelier than the traditional lemon variety. The inclusion of the coconut adds a depth which really enhances the two main flavours, whilst the chunky pieces of crystallised ginger pack yet another punch. I found this was lovely served with a dollop of tangy soya yoghurt – perfect for an evening coffee in the garden whilst you enjoy the spectacular weather we’ve been having.

For the loaf

175g dairy free spread (such as Vitalite or Pure)

80g caster sugar, plus 1 tbsp extra for the drizzle/syrup

80g brown sugar

3 tbsp apple sauce

200g plain flour

1tsp baking powder

1tsp ground ginger

50g desiccated coconut

30g crystallised ginger, chopped into chunky pieces

2tbsp soy milk

3 limes

For the glaze

5tbsp icing sugar

½ lime

boiling water (if needed)

To make the loaf

  • Cream the spread and sugars together until smooth, then grate the zest of three of the limes into the mixture. Add the apple sauce too.
  • Add the flour, baking powder, ground ginger, coconut and crystallised ginger to the mix. Combine all of this together, then pour in the juice of two of the limes, along with the soy milk. Stir this until the mixture is well combined.
  • Pour the batter into a lined or silicone loaf tin, then bake at 180C/350F/Gas 4 for 1hr-1hr 15mins, or until golden brown. Leave the cake to cool in the tin.
  • After the loaf has been cooling for 10-15 mins, prick holes into the top of the cake with a skewer or fork. Mix together the extra tbsp of caster sugar and the juice of one more lime, then gently pour this syrupy liquid over the top of the loaf.
  • Once the cake has cooled properly remove it from the tin. To the make the glaze for the top, stir together the icing sugar and the juice of half a lime. If this does not make a glaze of a liquid enough consistency to pour over the cake, add a tiny amount of boiling water until the glaze can be poured. Once this is achieved, slowly pour the glaze over the loaf; it will probably run down the sides and onto your worktop so you might want to put a plate underneath to catch the flood of icing. To finish, decorate the top with some extra crystallised ginger and a bit of lime zest, if you desire.
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