As I am sure those of you with a Welsh connection already know, St David's day is rapidly rolling round - in fact, it's this Saturday; and if you're feeling even a little patriotic or nostalgic, or else just a little peckish, this could be just the recipe for you.
Welsh cakes are a delicious, scone type cake traditionally made on a bakestone, but they can be made on a griddle or a dry frying pan wiped over with an oiled piece of kitchen roll. These little cakes are so good and so easy to make. They are traditionally made with currants, but nowadays they are often made with raisins or sultanas, chocolate chips, or chopped glace cherries and almond flakes (these are really cute as heart shapes!).
You will need:
225g self raising flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
75g caster sugar (golden if you have it)
75g currants, or raisins, or chocolate chips or chopped cherries & almond flakes
1 large egg
good pinch of allspice
a dash of milk
a large plate well covered in caster sugar to dust
Beat the egg in a cup. In a bowl, mix the flour, baking powder and allspice well. Rub the butter into the mixture with your fingertips to form breadcrumbs, stir in the sugar and fruit or chocolate and the beaten egg. Bring the mixture together, adding milk a few drops at a time until you have a dough a little softer than shortcrust pastry dough. Very lightly grease the frying pan or griddle and bring up to a moderate heat.
Flour your surface lightly and roll out the dough to between 1/2 and 1cm in thickness. Using a 2 1/2 inch cutter, cut out rounds of the dough. Provided your kitchen is reasonably cool, you could stack these prior to cooking if you are short of space by sprinkling a light dusting of flour between each one. The dough is very forgiving so you can keep rolling and re rolling until you have cut it all into rounds.You will have time to do this while they cook if you want to get going.
Cook the Welsh cakes on the pan or griddle about 5 or 6 at a time and cook for about 3-5 minutes each side until each side is turning a mottled golden brown. (if you flip them too early, just turn them again until they are golden). While they are still hot, drop them onto the plate of caster sugar, flipping to coat both sides. Stack on a plate or cooling rack.
These taste AMAZING still warm, enjoyed with a glass of milk or a hot cup of tea. Alternatively they can be enjoyed cold, and you can add butter and even jam or honey if desired. If you warm them over in the oven, they will taste freshly cooked.
This recipe is traditional but the measures are based on the wonderful little book 'Welsh Bakestone Cookery' written by Bobby Freeman and published by y Llolfa :)
Happy baking - and dydd Dewi Sant hapus for Saturday!