By Keighley’s Mike Armstrong, an award-winning master baker with a big passion for baking. See

AS the nights draw in and the rain lashes down, and you’re cocooned in your car with the heating on full blast and wishing you’d bought a pudding at the supermarket for afters...

A big bowl of comfort pudding has taste when it’s cold and miserable outside, and if you do your fair day’s work you are certain to get your fair day’s wage – in praise or pudding, and I’ll take the latter any day!

When it’s raining pudding, hold up your bowl, but how can you have your pudding if you don’t eat your meat I remember mum saying?

The proof of the pudding is in the eating and this week’s recipe is just that, being a reet bobby dazzler called Moggy cake.

If you’re not a Yorkshire Tyke from God’s own county, you may not be familiar with Moggy and you probably feel alarmed as the word Moggy in the West Ridings of old is also a familiar name for a non-pedigree cat or kitten.

I can assure you, no cats were involved in the making of this Moggy cake – meow, we don’t have to wear our trousers at half-mast. Moggy cake is, in fact, a ginger cake unlike our granny’s parkin, which we tend to munch on around the bonfire on a parky plot night to keep us going.

Moggy is made without oats, so that means it’s a lot lighter, more sponge-like and has been noshed in Yorkshire for hundreds of years, cut up and eaten with a brew or as a pudding with lashings of piping hot custard.

The good news is, unlike with parkin, you can give in to willpower with this recipe without the mellow four-day-wait – you can guzzle it down as soon as it comes out of the oven.

This is very much a Yorkshire sort of cake, it will upset a few connoisseurs faffing around with the recipe making them mardy and narky. I suppose as the saying goes, “where there’s muck, there’s brass”, and if you do find yourself spending the afternoon in the fields pulling up spuds or chipping coal out of the pit, Moggy will always see you through without you flagging.

It’s so simple and straightforward to make. It does lack presentation, but let me tell you, by ‘eck it does taste grand back end of the year. But a sound word in the lug’ole – make it into a slab of cake to cut up on the kitchen table, which is always a tradition in Yorkshire while drinking weak, mashed, pegged-out tea. If not, sling your hook, put your coit on and get on yer bike. This recipe has not popped its clogs just yet!




55g / 1oz butter

110g / 4oz golden syrup

30g / 1oz black treacle

115g / 4oz caster sugar

250g / 8oz self-raising flour

2 teaspoons ground ginger

1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda

1 egg, lightly beaten

200ml / fl oz milk


1. Butter and parchment line a square 22cm / 8inch baking tin or similar container.

2. Preheat the oven to 140c / Gas Mark 2.

3. Place the butter, golden syrup and black treacle into a small saucepan and gently melt over a low heat setting.

4. Sieve the flour, sugar, ginger and bicarbonate of soda into a large mixing bowl.

5. Slowly pour the melted butter mixture into the bowl and thoroughly mix to a stiff batter.

6. In a jug, combine the milk and egg together and slowly add it to the batter till it slackens and thins out and becomes smooth and silky.

7. Pour the batter into the tin and bake for around an hour or until well risen and golden brown.

8. Allow to cool in the tin, wrap in foil and store in an airtight container and eat within a week.