Wednesday, 16 November 2016

Globecooking recipe : Welsh Cakes Two Ways (Wales)


I have very fond memories of my happy, carefree student days spent in Swansea, wandering along the beach to Mumbles, shopping in The Quadrant covered market, going climbing all over the Gower Peninsula and discovering the beautiful windswept beaches off-season. One of my housemates had a Welsh granny that she visited on a regular basis and, every single time, she'd come back home laden down with sugar-sprinkled, homemade Welsh cakes, bursting with juicy raisins.

I was therefore intrigued to learn about a new book released by Welsh cook & food writer Gilli Davies, full of recipes for the humble Welsh Cake. It is one of a series of three new books by the writer that celebrate a trio of foodie favourites from Wales: seaweed, sea salt and Welsh Cakes. Each book features a number of recipes celebrating the best of Welsh food heritage, with traditional favourites such as classic Welsh Cakes, lavercakes with bacon, and spiced Christmas lamb, but also some fun new twists on the classics, with gooey hazelnut and treacle Welsh Cakes, deep fried laver and a sumptuous dark chocolate and salted caramel tart.

Gilli Davies says “It is always a treat to create new recipes using the best of Welsh ingredients. Sometimes I base my recipes on dishes that were part of traditional Welsh fare, but being creative with these excellent foods offers the chance to develop a modern Welsh cuisine.” Peter Gill, managing director of Graffeg, says “Almost everyone who grew up in Wales will remember warm, crumbly Welsh Cakes filled with sweet fruit, and will no doubt have come across laverbread at some point. But few will have tasted Welsh Cakes filled with lavender, or traditional Welsh laver deep fried with Szechuan pepper.”

If you fancy giving Welsh Cakes a try, I have two of Gilli's recipes to share with you - a traditional one and a more adventurous modern twist. Which one takes your fancy ?

©Huw Jones
Traditional Welsh Cakes

Ingredients

225g self-raising flour
100g butter or a mixture of butter and lard
75g caster sugar
75g currants
1/2 teaspoon mixed spice
1 teaspoon honey
1 medium egg, beaten

Method

1. In a bowl, rub the fats into the flour until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs.
2. Stir in the sugar, currants, mixed spice and honey.
3. Add the beaten egg and mix to form a firm dough.
4. On a floured board, roll or pat out the mixture until about 1cm thick and cut into 6cm discs.
5. Heat a griddle or large frying pan to a medium heat and griddle gently until golden brown on both sides(only grease the griddle if you think the Welsh cakes will stick).
6. Dust the Welsh cakes with caster sugar and eat immediately, or store in an airtight tin.

©Huw Jones

Caerphilly Cheese and Leek Welsh Cakes

Ingredients

1 medium leek, washed and finely shredded
50g Caerphilly cheese, grated
225g self-raising flour
50g butter
1 small egg, beaten

Method

1. Dunk the leek in boiling water for 5 minutes then rinse under the cold tap and squeeze dry.
2. In a bowl, rub the butter into the flour until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs.
3. Stir in the cooled, cooked leek and grated cheese.
4. Add the beaten egg and mix to form a firm dough.
5. On a floured board, roll or pat out the mixture until about 1cm thick and cut into discs.
6. Heat a griddle or large frying pan to a medium heat and griddle gently until golden brown on both sides (only grease the griddle if you think the Welsh Cakes will stick)

The Welsh Cake Cookbook by Gilli Davies, published by Graffeg, out now. £6.99
Also in the series: The Sea Salt Cookbook and The Seaweed Cookbook



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7 comments:

  1. Nice! I love the sound of the cheese and leek ones.

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    1. They appeal to me too - I definitely need to give them a go :)

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  2. Sounds like a lovely book! I have only tried sweet variety of Welsh cakes. Our local manor farm often bakes Welsh cakes with grated apple for visitors, and I think I have a recipe somewhere on my blog.

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    1. I like the sound of including grated apple - I'm sure it adds lovely sweetness and moisture. Definitely worth experimenting with :)

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  3. Do you think I could substitute golden syrup for the honey as my daughter is allergic to honey?

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    1. Yes, I would think so - or you could just leave it out altogether :)

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