Wednesday, 13 November 2013

mixed spice rock cakes



Back in April, I was having a pretty rubbish time with a boy I'd been seeing. Nothing major, nothing new, nothing exciting - I just liked him more than he liked me. A tale as old as time, etc etc. But the point is, it was around the same sort of time that I rediscovered rock cakes. Now, I know I throw around the phrase "comfort food" quite a lot, and that's because food = comfort for me, but these really are my ultimate comfort food. I so associate them with my childhood: with making them in primary school because they couldn't be simpler; with the smell of my mother's rock cakes cooling in the kitchen; with wanting so much to go to Hogwarts, and to eat rock cakes with Harry, Ron & Hermione in Hagrid's hut. So the moment I'm settling down with a rock cake and a cup of tea I'm suddenly 8 years old again, and I'm warm and safe and happy and home. Isn't it wonderful how food can do that for us? There's nothing else like it in the world. Nothing at all.

This is a pretty much foolproof recipe that requires one bowl, no mixer, and very little skill or thought at all, really. You'll probably already have most of the ingredients in your cupboard already, and if not, there's nothing here that's gonna break the bank or be difficult to find. If you're new to baking, or if you're baking with little ones, this is the ideal recipe to get you started & it'll fill your house with all the delicious smells of your childhood home. Seriously, what's stopping you? Go! Go forth & bake!


To make 9 big rock cakes, or 12 small ones, you will need:
  • 225g self raising flour.
  • 1 teaspoon of baking powder.
  • 110g unsalted butter.
  • 55g granulated sugar.
  • 110g mixed dried fruit.
  • 55g currants.
  • 1 egg.
  • 1 tablespoon of milk.
  • Demerara sugar.
  • 1 teaspoon of mixed spice.



1. Preheat the oven to 200 degrees C.

2. Sieve the flour, baking powder & mixed spice into a bowl.

3. Cube the butter & add it into the bowl, then mix it all together with your hands until it resembles bread crumbs - as in the above picture.



4. Add the sugar, dried fruit & currants into the bowl and mix it all together.

5. In a small bowl or cup, whisk up the egg & tablespoon of milk then pour it into the bowl - mixing together until it forms a dough.



6. Take handfuls of the dough & roll them into small ball shapes, before placing them on a baking tray lined with grease proof paper. You should be able to make 12 small rock cakes, or 9 medium sized ones.

7. Sprinkle with demerara sugar, then bake for about 10-15 minutes - or until golden brown on top.

Whenever you have a problem in your life, just ask yourself it's a serious problem, or if it can be solved by a giant plate of home made rock cakes & a large cup of tea. Perspective, people. Perspective.


18 comments:

  1. Holly - are rock cakes similar to scones? I love learning about this and the image of it bringing back childhood memories and comfort for you is so nice. : ) Speaking of Hogwarts, what amazing books. I can't wait for my son to start reading them all!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. they are, they're very similar! sort of like "bad" scones, haha - like if you were make scones and they ended up quite dense and flat, this is what you'd have! but i love them anyway, and find that with the demerara topping & mixed peel they're much sweeter than scones :)

      Delete
  2. Aw, I loved reading about your memories of these cakes! (Except for the boy business, of course) I can't believe I've never had one of these... but anything with mixed spice and brown sugar is a winner for me this time of year :-)

    Aimee / WallflowerGirl.co.uk

    ReplyDelete
  3. I love how your post goes back to your childhood memories... recalling those safe and comforting times. It comforted ME! Anyway, I've never heard of rock cakes before. But they sure look tasty!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. aw thank ruby! definitely give one a go some time if you ever come across any :)

      Delete
  4. Oh my!! These are so cute and look delicious! Yumm... perfect for the holiday season!

    ReplyDelete
  5. I love the dried fruit added into these cookies, gives them a nice little healthy touch! Thanks for sharing!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. haha, as "healthy" as i ever get ;) you're welcome! thanks for your comment, pamela :)

      Delete
  6. These look so nice and I really enjoyed your story about being taken back to your childhood. I have so many dishes like that, in fact I have a book of my Mum's hand written recipes which is one of my most prized possessions as every recipe in there tells a little story of my childhood. Thanks for sharing.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. oh wow! you lucky thing, i bet that's amazing. i'd love to one day make something like that for my own children in the future. thanks for your comment :)

      Delete
  7. I love when foods bring up childhood memories! I've never heard of rock cakes either, but I love easy, comfort foods.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. well these definitely couldn't be easier! thanks christin :)

      Delete
  8. I want to do that with the Harry potter friends too :) these look so great!

    agirlandhersparkles.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  9. I love those foods that remind you of your childhood! There are so many recipes that remind me of my mom and things we used to cook when I was little. These look delicious!

    Angi@ cantbuymelovvve.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  10. Ok, now that's too cute! When I was younger I would wish I went to Hogwarts to have rock cakes with Harry, Ron and Hermione! ((oh, well, I still do)). These look delicious, an I'd never have imagined they'd be this easy to make ;)

    ReplyDelete
  11. Smile. So true. I remember quite a few weeks with my favorite blueberry muffin. It has helped me nurse many broken hearts. These rock cakes look and sound delicious. Thank you for sharing!

    ReplyDelete