Sunday, September 8, 2013

Lardy Cakes

These are very moist, traditional, rich British tea cakes with piles of flavor. Not for those on a diet, says the BBC! This is a traditional British recipe, so you may find the ingredients and terminology slightly different.

Lardy Cakes


  • 450g/1lb flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 x 7g packages of instant yeast
  • 75g/2½ oz lard
  • 300ml/10½fl oz water
  • 75g/2½ oz butter
  • 225g/8oz mixed dried fruit, including mixed peel
  • 50g/1¾ oz soft brown sugar
  • extra flour for dusting


  1. Mix together the flour, salt and yeast in a mixing bowl. Rub in 20g/¾ oz of the lard using your fingertips until there are no pieces of lard visible.
  2. Add three-quarters of the water and hand-mix the flour into the water to form a dough. Add as much of the remaining water as you need to get a dough that is soft and leaves the sides of the bowl clean.
  3. Tip the dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead for 5-10 minutes, or until the dough is smooth. Place in a clean bowl, cover and leave to rise until doubled in size. This depends on the temperature of the room, but should take 1-2 hours.
  4. Tip the dough onto a floured work surface and roll into a rectangle about 8x20 inches and about ½cm thick.
  5. Dot a third of the remaining lard and a third of the butter over the surface of the dough. Scatter over a third of the fruit and a third of the sugar. Fold the top third of the dough down and the bottom third up so that the dough is folded in three and roughly square. Turn the dough a quarter turn. Roll out and repeat the out process twice more, to use up all the lard and fruit.
  6. Line a 9x9 inch square loose bottomed tin lined with baking parchment. Roll out the dough to fit the tin and place it inside. Cover with cling wrap, or place inside a large plastic bag, and leave to rise for 30 minutes. Preheat the oven to 220C/425F/Gas 7.
  7. Bake for 30-35 minutes, or until golden-brown.
  8. Leave to cool slightly before removing from the tin. Cut into squares and serve warm or cold, with butter.

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