Sunday, 26 March 2017

Welsh Cakes

My Granny was Welsh, she made great Welsh Cakes... and I remember making them with her.   However, Welsh Cakes are usually made on a griddle, a flat iron plate, which I don't have.  Having a new 'ceramic non-stick' frying pan, we needed a recipe to try out its non-stick properties and Welsh Cakes fitted the bill nicely.

I don't have my Granny's recipe but I do think the one I made up is pretty close... apart from using gluten free flour (which I don't think existed back in Granny's day!)

The ingredients we used were:-

225g self raising flour  (we used Dove's Farm gluten free)
pinch of salt
1 teaspoon mixed spice
110g butter (Granny used to use lard)
75g caster sugar
75g mixed currants
1 large egg beaten

Using a bowl, we mixed the flour, salt, spice and butter.  We used a hand balloon whisk to get a breadcrumb-like texture (and this also 'saves' my ailing fiingers from too much effort)

Next the sugar and currants were added and mixed through.

Finally the beaten egg was added.  At this point, the mix it may be a bit dry still, so if needed, use a little buttermilk or yogurt, to make the dough soft enough to be able to brought together (we did add yogurt to ours).

Once the dough came together and wasn't too wet or dry.  We lightly pressed it out, then rolled to about 5-7mm thick.  The dough was then cut in 5cm rounds.

Heating the pan, the cakes were cooked - you can use a heated griddle, lightly buttered frying pan, or as we did in a ceramic coated frying pan (it worked very well.

Cooking till browned on one side, the cakes were flipped/turned and cooked on the other side (about 3 mins a side... but depends on heat, thickness and the level of 'cook' you're aiming for).

Once cooked on both sides, the cakes were removed, placed on a plate and drizzled lightly with caster sugar.

Eaten warm, they were delicious.  They were also very tasty with a cup of tea and, surprisingly, kept well in an airtight container.

Friday, 10 March 2017

Flat Bread

Having bought a ceramic frying pan (finally convinced because a/ J can't stand the smell from 'traditional' non-stick coatings, b/ pal had been raving about the wonders of ceramic coated pans, c/ it was on offer and below £10 and d/ it was YELLOW!)  we've been trying out its thermal transfer prowess, non-stickability and easy cleaning.  Also, we've been going to make a flatbread for, decided to give it a go (to accompany tonight's Bean and Pepper Chilli).

Ingredients -

200g self raising flour (we used Dove's Farm #glutenfree)
150ml plain yogurt/water mix (we used about half and half, mixed in a jug)
1 Tablespoon oil (we used olive oil)

This is the simplest of 'bakes'. 

The flour was weighed into a mixing bowl.

The wet ingredients were added and mixed through thoroughly using a silicone spatula (making sure to incorporate all the flour from the bottom of the bowl)  [a little more liquid MAY be needed to allow the dough to form... add small amounts of cold water, if so...]

Next we divided the dough into three 120g balls (because there are three of us... but you could halve the dough or quarter it... it's up to you and how you do this will depend on the size of the breads you make in the end). 

Using a silicone sheet and a dusting of flour, the dough balls were then rolled out into roughly cirular shapes, about 5mm thick. 

Each dough circle was cooked in a pre-heated DRY ceramic frying pan for 3-4 mins on each side (the time needed to cook your breads will depend on the thickness of the dough and the temperature of your pan... keep an eye on them and SET THE TIMER!)  The breads is done when the underside is starting to turn golden brown in places and holds together when you lift them carefully with a spatula... at which point we flipped the bread over and repeated cooking on the other side.

Once cooked the breads were kept warm in a covered dish until all three were ready to be served.

These would be good brushed with butter, or spread with garlic butter, but we ate them plain with our chilli dish. 
We'll definitely make these again because they were warm, moist and Sous Chef J polished his flatbread off before starting on the chilli!