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Eccles Cakes Recipe

May 10, 2018

Eccles Cakes Recipe

The Eccles cake is believed to have been devised in Lancashire. We've kept it simple and traditional; with no added spices or flavourings but you can, of course, tweak this recipe to suit your taste. The essential components are the flakey pastry, the fruit filling and the crunchy sugar topping, the rest is up to you! We've added some product suggestions along the way, note the colour choices are in-keeping with our theme.

  

Equipment required

 

x2 baking sheets

 

For the pastry

 

250g unsalted butter

 

350g plain flour

 

150ml cold water (plus extra to seal)

 

For the filling

 

50g unsalted butter (melted and cooled)

 

125g raisins

 

125g currents

 

100g light brown muscovado sugar

 

For the topping

 

1 egg white

 

100g golden granulated sugar

 

Step 1 – Chill the butter and prep your ingredients.

 

Start by weighing out the butter and cutting it roughly into cubes, then pop the lot in the freezer to harden for an hour or so. You can use this time to weigh out the remainder of the ingredients and prepare the filling.

 

Step 2 – Prepare the filling.

 

Place the remaining butter in a saucepan and melt over a medium heat, taking care not to let it burn. Once its melted, take it off the heat then add the raisins and currants and allow the mixture to cool. Add the muscovado sugar and stir until all the fruit is coated with sugar, then set aside ready to construct later.

 

Step 3 – Back to the pastry.

 

If you haven't already, weigh out the flour into a large mixing bowl, then remove the butter from the freezer. Grate the butter into the bowl using a box grater on the coarsest side, this is much easier to do if you dip the butter cubes into the flour first. Move the butter around, grating every side of each cube to avoid it softening too much. Once all the butter is grated, mix the butter and flour together using a spatula or pallet knife. Add the ice cold water to the mixture, bringing it together as much as possible before turning it out onto your work surface. Finish off the dough with your hands, making a ball of dough ready to be rolled.

 

Step 4 – Roll out the dough.

 

Roll out the dough into a large rectangle, about 20cm x 30cm, you want the edges to be fairly straight and even. Now looking at the rectangle, imagine it divided into quarters, fold the two shortest edges in so that the four quarters become two, then fold that in half. Wrap the now folded pastry in clingfilm and put in the fridge to chill for at least 20minutes, an hour if you have the time.

 

Step 5 – Roll, divide and fill your pastry.

 

Grab the now chilled pastry from the fridge, and roll out again into the same sizes rectangle as before, roughly 20cm x 30cm. Divide this into 10 small squares using a ruler if you have one handy, you can judge it by eye but I always find if I do this I end up with a few misshaped ones. Now is a good time to start pre-heating your oven, you need it at 220ºC (200ºC fan, gas mark 8). Fill each square with the fruit, sugar and butter mixture, you need about a tablespoon in each. A good tip is to divide up the filling before you close up your pastry parcels, that way if you find you are running out of fruit, you can always pinch a bit back.

 

Step 6 – Close up your cakes and bake.

 

Grab a pastry brush and some cold water for this next bit. One by one brush the edges and seal each cake. Do this by bringing all four corners together, then bring the newly created corners together again. Flatten the cake and turn in seam side down, roll a little with a rolling pin to make a round shape then cut three slits in the top. Brush each cake with egg-wash and sprinkle with golden granulated sugar. Place onto a lined baking tray and bake for 20-25 minutes until golden brown and bubbling, don't worry if they leak a little, thats all part of the charm. Serve with a nice cup of tea or some good creamy British cheese if you're keeping it traditional.

 

Enjoy! Hatty x

 

 

Recipe courtesy of Hatty Bakewell's, delicious local homemade cakes for any occasion.