French Cuisine: Spiced Ginger Loaf

This spiced ginger loaf is a very old cake which has its origins in Antiquity. It is mostly consumed in France especially in winter. There are two main types that exist in France the first being the ‘Pain d’épices de Dijon‘ (based on wheat flower) and ‘Pain d’épices de Reims‘ (based on rye flower). It was in fact in Reims where the first masters of the cake were based.

This delicious cake is not difficult to make and it has many varieties. You can easily make it without gluten by using chestnut flower for example.

Today we will present you with the traditional recipe from the Pain d’épices de Dijon:

Ingredients (for 8 People)

  • 250g of honey
  • 200g of flower
  • 1 sachet of baking powder
  • 50g of brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons of water
  • 1 egg
  • A pinch of salt
  • 10g of mixed spice (cinnamon, ginger, cloves, nutmeg) – add according to your taste
  • (Optional) Walnuts, hazelnuts, orange peel


  • Preheat the oven to 190 degrees (thermostat 6-7)
  • Melt the honey in the hot water
  • Add the flower and mix thoroughly to avoid lumps
  • Incorporate the baking powder, brown sugar, the egg and the salt – mix again
  • Add the spices (and the nuts)
  • Pour the mixture into a cake tin
  • Cook for 30-35 minutes
  • Check that it is cooked and leave to cool before removing from the pan.