Sunday, 31 August 2014


The Hunger Games is one of the most popular set of films/books currently circuiting & my friend Emily is a big fan. With her birthday being this past week, & us always being the ones to bake the birthday cakes, it was all on my back to produce a single-handed masterpiece. I wouldn't quite call it that (because it was my first shot) however I think the imperfections of my mocking jay (hopefully) add love to this bake as it is a very personalised cake. 

I translated Emily's love of whiskey (don't worry she's not an alcoholic!) with a whiskey & honey flavoured cake & butter cream, although she did suggest more whiskey was needed (maybe she is an alcoholic?!) I agreed to be fair...I added about 6 tablespoons to the cake & 2 tablespoons to the icing, however add more according to your tastes! To complement the whiskey & honey, I decided to make the mocking jay with gingerbread & used the leftover for decorative flames (although they kind of look more like leaves...) & made them the day before the cake because it keeps longer than the cake, & I had work in between baking...

I also decorated the cake with some strawberries around the sides, adding a flash of colour. I would have loved some gold leaf to have decorated the mocking jay with as well, but maybe one of you could try that & let me know how it turns out? I separated the mocking jay symbol into 3 templates to build up a 3-dimensional effect & prevent the gingerbread from spreading too much when it baked. You can trace an image, or just let me know if you would like the templates & I can always upload them for you! 

...Hunger Games Whiskey & Honey Cake with Gingerbread Mocking Jay...

...Ingredients for gingerbread...
  • 215g plain flour, plus extra for dusting
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon all spice/mixed spice
  • 1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
  • 60g butter
  • 50g golden syrup
  • 60g soft brown sugar (or light muscovado)
  • 1/2 egg (beaten)

...Method for gingerbread...
  • Preheat over to 160 degrees & line about 3 baking trays with baking parchment.
  • Mix the flour, ginger, all spice & bicarbonate of soda into a large bowl.
  • Melt the butter, golden syrup & sugar in a saucepan over a low heat & stir until melted.
  • Pour wet mixture into the dry mixture & add the egg.
  • Mix together to make a dough (I started it with a wooden spoon as it is sticky at first, but then switched to use my hands as it becomes firmer as it cools)
  • Roll out the dough on a lightly floured surface, until about 5mm thick & cut out the templates (make your own by tracing the mocking jay, or I can upload mine if in demand!)
  • Use the rest of the dough to make the flames (I did this freehand!)
  • Bake in the preheated over for about 15 minutes (but keep an eye on them as they can catch easily & the different sizes will bake at different rates!)
  • Remove from the oven & leave to cool before placing in a cake tin (or carefully wrap in foil) ready to assemble later.

...Ingredients for whiskey & honey cake...
  • 170g self-raising flour
  • 170g butter
  • 170g soft brown sugar (or light muscovado)
  • 3 beaten eggs
  • 6 tablespoons whisky (or more, if you prefer! Make sure you add a little more flour if the mixture becomes too liquidly though) 
  • 2 tablespoons of runny honey
  • Grated rind of a small orange
  • Handful of strawberries (optional, for decorative purposes)

...Method for whiskey & honey cake...
  • Preheat the oven to 190 degrees & line 2 cake tins with cake cases.
  • Cream the butter & sugar together.
  • Add the orange rind & beat in the eggs, one at a time. Mix until pale and fluffy. 
  • Sift in half the self-raising flour, pour in the whisky & mix.
  • Sift in the remaining flour & mix. 
  • Divide between the two tins & bake in the preheated oven for 20/25 minutes until the cake is golden. 
  • Turn onto a wire rack to allow it to cool.

...Ingredients for whiskey & honey butter icing...
  • 170g icing sugar
  • 60g butter
  • 2 tablespoons of runny honey (or more, if you prefer)
  • Juice from a small orange 
  • 2 tablespoons of whiskey (or more, but you will need to add a lot more icing sugar if so)

...Method for whiskey & honey butter icing...
  • Put the butter, honey & 1 tablespoon of orange juice in a mixing bowl. 
  • Slowly sift in the icing sugar & mix until they are all combined. 

...Assembling the cake...
  • Use about 1/3 of the butter cream as a sandwich between the cakes.
  • Spread the rest over the cake & around the sides. 
  • Stick the mocking jay pieces on one-by-one attached with a thin layer of the icing: circle, mocking jay, then arrow.
  • Assemble the flames around the cake.
  • Cut the strawberries in half lengthways & assemble around the cake if you are using them.

 I would love to know about your Hunger Games, or themed creations!