Once upon a time, I walked alone through 47km of Wales. One of the brilliant things about walking and walking and walking is that you can follow it up by eating and eating and eating with NO GUILT. None! So, during this walk, I powered my legs with as many local baked goods as possible. I’m quite sure I left a trail of Welsh Cake/Bara Brith crumbs in my wake across the whole 47km.
The Welsh Cake is a little puck that is surprisingly rich in flavour, as though you put a scone in your back pocket and then sat upon it and instead of crumbling, it just got tastier. Please do not try that technique at home. In fact, you’d better just look at the Welsh Cakes recipe below, which has been provided by my dear friends Rupert and Annette and is, in their words, “as old as the hills.” I used the lard because shortening does bad things to my innards, but if you’re vegetarian then the alternative is presented in brackets.
(Makes 16-20 cakes)
- 8 oz. self-raising flour (or 2 cups all purpose flour + 2 1/2 teaspoons of baking powder)
- 3 oz. lard (0r 1/2 cup shortening)
- 3 oz. currants (1/2 cup)
- 3 oz. sugar (1/2 cup)
- 1 egg
- 2 pinches of salt
- milk or water
Sieve flour and salt, rub in fat and stir in sugar and fruit. Mix to pastry consistency with egg and milk or water. Roll out to 1/4 inch thickness and cut with a fluted 2 1/2″ round cutter.
Cook on a bake stone, griddle or cast iron skillet. The first side takes about 4 minutes. Flip and continue cooking for about 3 minutes.