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.