Thursday, June 24, 2010

Thursday baking - rock cakes

As we bake our way through A Treasury of NZ Baking...

I must admit this recipe wasn't orignally on my want-to-make list from this book. Of all the contributors in the Treasury David Burton seems to have provided the most austere offerings, with his recipes all looking like something NZ housewives would have rustled up during frugal war times. Rock cakes do seem like the poor unfashionable cousin to the glammed up cupcake that is currently in vogue. However the other day I felt like baking something a little restrained, so rock cakes it was.
We had some whisky soaked raisins in the fridge, which made a nice addition, as did a little cinnamon sugar sprinkled on top before the cakes were baked. They were really nice. A cross between a biscuit and a cake, they were perfect with a cup of tea on a winter afternoon. Fast to make too, so they would make nice change from scones if you needed to produce afternoon tea in a hurry. Bring back rock cakes!
Rock Cakes - David Burton (week 14)

2 c flour
115g butter
1 c sugar (They were quite sweet, next time I would do 3/4c)
2 tbsp baking powder
1 tsp cinnamon
1 c sultanas (I used whisky soaked raisins)
1/4 c glace peel (I loathe peel so used lemon zest)
2 eggs
milk for mixing - if needed

Preheat oven to 240c. Line 2 baking trays with paper. Rub butter into flour, by hand or in a food processor. Add the sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, sultanas and peel/zest. Beat in eggs one at a time, then add enough milk to form a stiff dough.

Use two spoons to place rough heaps of dough onto the trays. Bake for around 15 minutes, rotating the trays halfway through cooking until the cakes are golden brown on top. Cool on a wire rack.

Keep for up to 1 week in an airtight container.

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