Welsh Cakes

The best recipe that I’ve found for Welsh Cakes comes from Mary Berry’s Baking Bible recipe book.

Welsh Cakes are a favourite in our house. They are so simple but so more-ish. If I eat one, before I know it three will have accidently popped into my mouth. I made a batch last weekend and they went within two days between the two of us! That wasn’t such a bad thing though as they are freshest and tastiest when eaten on the same day they are baked. Obviously they are still fine to eat two or even three days later, just not quite at their absolute prime.

Welsh Cakes are similar to fruit scones just flatter, denser and sweeter. They are topped with a sprinkling of sugar and contain mixed spice and currants, which gives them a nice, sweet flavour. Many people including Mary Berry, recommend that you should eat them with butter. Personally I eat them as they come but I also don’t add butter when eating a scone (just lots of jam) so give them a go with butter if you fancy it.

When reading the recipe, I learnt that it is traditional to use a fluted cutter when baking sweet cakes. I also think it makes them look prettier so I opted for a fluted cutter, but you may find a plain cutter will cut through the fruit in the dough more easily.

Ingredients

350 g self-raising flour

2 level tsp baking powder

175 g butter

115 g caster sugar plus extra for sprinkling

100 g currants

3/4 tsp ground mixed spice

1 large egg

2 tbsp milk

  1. You’ll need a griddle pan or heavy-based frying pan, lightly greased with oil.
  2. Add the flour and baking powder into a bowl and use your fingertips to rub the butter into the flour until you get fine breadcrumbs. Then measure in the sugar, currants and spice.
  3. In a separate bowl, beat the egg and milk together. Add this to the other mixture and mix with your hands to form a firm dough. You can always add a little more milk if needed.
  4. On a lightly floured work surface, use a rolling pin to roll out the dough, to a thickness of 5mm (┬╝in) then cut into rounds with a 7.5cm (3in) round cutter.
  5. In batches, place the dough rounds on the hot griddle on a low heat and cook for about 3 minutes on each side until golden brown (don’t cook them too fast, otherwise the centres may not be fully cooked).
  6. Place on a wire rack then sprinkle with caster sugar and leave to cool. They are best eaten on the day of baking and can be served with butter should you wish to.

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