Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Baking

Doing the good guest thing, I brought my brother some Rock Cakes when I went to stay over the weekend. Here's the recipe, which due to the original dating back to 1955 is kind of Imperial (I tarted it up ever so slightly for 21st Century tastes and labour-saving devices ):

Rock Cakes

8 oz self-raising flour
pinch of salt
teaspoon of baking powder (I'm paranoid about cakes not rising, so if you're confident you can leave this out)
3 oz hard margarine
3 oz sugar
2 oz currents
2 oz cut mixed peel
Zest of 1 lemon
1 egg
3 dessert spoons milk

Prepare a baking sheet by smearing it with margarine. Turn on the oven to 400F (Gas Mark 6, 200 C).

Sieve the flour and put it into a food processor. Cut the margarine up and stick that in too. Turn on the food processor until the margarine is mixed in (the mixture looks a bit like breadcrumbs). Beat the egg and milk together in a bowl. Add the milk and egg mixture to the food processor along with the sugar, fruit and zest. Whizz the processor again, just long enough to mix everything together, but not so the fruit is chopped entirely up.

Put little (dessert spoon) heaps onto the greased baking tray and put in the oven for about 15 minutes (this was a fan-assisted oven, so it may take a little longer) when they were nicely brown (also nearly double in size).

This batch were just a touch dry, but that's okay for rock cakes anyway. My next baking trick will probably be a cake in the style of a black forest gateau - I just hope mine doesn't turn out like Antony Worrall Thompson's (check the picture).