Did I tell you that I once won a whole case of Gordons gin? 12 whole bottles, all because I was bored on the East Coast Mainline, returning from an Employment Tribunal in Newcastle Upon Tyne to London? Well I did. I think I might have been the only person who entered the competition in the 'in train' magazine, because I also won tickets to see Stomp all from the same postcard entry form. In many ways, I think it's slightly unfortunate that I cancelled out my entire winning streak with one competition. I mean, I'm unlikely to win on the premium bonds now - I can't even win a tenner on a scratch card (not that I buy them - perhaps that's the problem? But no, I think even if I did buy them, or play the lottery, I just wouldn't win).
I do like a gin & tonic. You'd think that 12 bottles and I might have got a little bored of it, but no, although I have to say that Gordons is unlikely to be my gin of choice these days. I'm rather partial to Bombay Sapphire as a kind of 'day to day' gin - which makes it sound like I drink it all the time, which I don't (really, Mum, I absolutely don't). My all time favourite gin was one that a local wine merchant produced for me I went in looking for Hendricks, and came out with a bottle, one of only a dozen he'd managed to get his hands on (I didn't ask how), or gin distilled on the bay in San Francisco. I can't to my shame remember what it was called, but it was delicious. I've never seen it since which is a great shame.
I've just come to the end of a rather delicious elderflower infused concoction by Warner Edwards, purchased at CarFest last year, and cracked open a bottle of Adnams 'Copper House' gin which a friend brought with her when she came to stay. She can come again.
The reason for cracking open a bottle of gin on a Sunday morning, which felt very decadent and not a little raffish, is this cake. You see, I like gin & I like cake. The lure of a gin & tonic cake must therefore be obvious to you.
I baked it for the July meeting of the Cardigan Clandestine Cake Club, on the theme 'Summertime'. because what could be more summery than sitting outside as the heat just starts to drift out of the day, drinking a gin & tonic. Fancy cocktails are all very well, but you just can't beat a great G&T. And I do love a lemon drizzle cake, ad this combines the best of both.
The cake calls for the weighing method for ingredients - my eggs weighed 250g which has NEVER happened to me before, but the resultant mixture was probably a little too much. I should have diverted some of it into cupcakes, I think. Somewhere in the region of 200g might have been better.
But when a cake has gin in it, you can cast aside any sense of caution. And this cake does have a lot of gin in it. A. LOT. Mostly in the drizzle. I tried to distribute the drizzle evenly over the cake, but I did still end up with a very gin soaked central part of cake, with gin becoming more subtle the closer to the edges and the bottom of the cake you nibbled. That said, if I hadn't been driving, I would have embraced the gin-soaked centre with enthusiasm.
It was a real shame we were all, to a woman, driving, to be honest - because getting gently sozzled on a lovely piece of cake, well, it's a pretty enjoyable thought for a summer evening, really. Definitely a cake for the grownups, I'd say. One to make when you know you're not going to be driving anywhere.
My fellow blogger, Sarah, who's lovely bit of the blogosphere is A View from the Table was similarly interested in this cake, being a bit of a gin connoisseur, and so I'll be interested to hear what she thought of this cake.