Warning: include(wp-includes/class-wp-query-update.php) [function.include]: failed to open stream: No such file or directory in /home/content/60/5254760/html/wp-settings.php on line 325

Warning: include() [function.include]: Failed opening 'wp-includes/class-wp-query-update.php' for inclusion (include_path='.:/usr/local/php5/lib/php') in /home/content/60/5254760/html/wp-settings.php on line 325
Woodfired Eccles Cakes | Sortachef

Woodfired Eccles Cakes

Eccles Cakes (really more of a pastry to us Americans) are savory treats filled with currants that are delicately spiced with nutmeg and allspice. Once you’ve had one, you’re hooked! The flavor combination is the quintessential accompaniment to tea for many an Englishman and Englishwoman. Sprung from the unlikely industrial town of Eccles, west of Manchester, in the late 1700’s, Eccles cakes are still a favorite today in England, as are their cousins from Banbury, to which my recipe is similar. And, in the old tradition, these are woodfired!

This post is part of the Foodbuzz benefit for ovarian cancer research. As part of the effort, we’ll be taking over the Top 9 on Friday, March 25th with tea party recipes. For more info and to donate to a great cause, please see  http://www.kelly-confidential.com.

Disclaimer: Sortachef is in no way associated with the politically motivated Tea Party movement!

Woodfired Eccles Cakes 

Makes 6 cakes

For the pastry:

2 cups flour

½ teaspoon salt

½ teaspoon yeast

2 Tablespoons sugar

4 Tablespoons cold butter, divided

7 Tablespoons cold water

2 Tablespoons Spectrum Shortening

 

For the filling:

2/3 cups currants

2 Tablespoons chopped peel

¼ teaspoon nutmeg

¼ teaspoon allspice

1 Tablespoon butter

1 Tablespoon sugar

Also needed:

1 eggwhite+1 teaspoon coarse sugar to coat

11”x17” parchment paper

 

Make the pastry: Combine flour, salt, yeast and sugar in a large bowl. Rub in 2 Tablespoons of butter and then lightly toss with the cold water. Make a compact mass, adding another tablespoon of water if necessary to make a stiff dough. Knead for 30 seconds, cover with plastic and refrigerate for 1 hour.

Using a rolling pin, spread the dough on a floured surface into a 10”x 15” rectangle. Dot 2/3 of the rectangle with 2 Tablespoons each butter and Spectrum shortening and fold in thirds to create layers. Roll out again and fold in thirds. Repeat, so that you have multiple layers of pastry with butter in between. Refrigerate for another hour.

Flattening the cakes

Heat and cool the filling: Combine filling ingredients in a small pan and heat over medium-low heat for 5 minutes. Let cool.

Make the cakes: Roll out the dough to 12”x 18”. Cut into 6 pieces, and put an equal portion of cooled filling on each. Fold like a burrito and tuck the ends over. Turn these pieces over, flap end down, onto the parchment placed on the back of a cookie sheet. Flatten with a rolling pin until you can see the currants beneath the surface. Let sit for 20 minutes before coating and baking.

Bake in a woodfired oven: Have your oven well heated, with the fire at the center. After 2 hours, push the fire to the back and sweep the floor clean of ashes. Coat the Eccles Cakes with eggwhite and slash with a knife to expose some of the filling. Sprinkle with sugar and pop into the oven to bake for about 10 minutes, turning once for even browning. Cool on a rack.

Bake in a conventional oven: Place quarry tiles on a center rack and preheat oven to 425°. Coat the Eccles Cakes with eggwhite and slash with a knife to expose some of the filling. Sprinkle with sugar and pop into the oven to bake for about 15 minutes, turning once for even browning. Cool on a rack.

Cup of tea then, Dear?

 

Eccles Cake on parchment

14 comments to Woodfired Eccles Cakes

Leave a Reply

 

 

 

You can use these HTML tags

<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

Welcome Aboard

At Woodfiredkitchen.com, Sortachef takes you on adventures in the kitchen and beyond, with tales to suit. Many of his offerings are woodfired - a flaming good recipe for pizza, bread, or something different. All recipes are original and tasty. Enjoy!
Totally Fresh Tomato Lasagna on Foodista
CookEatShare Featured Author
view my recipes
CookEatShare Featured Author