Welsh Cakes are a new family favourite. They have been a nice addition to our rotation of home-baking we’ve been enjoying for lunch.
My side of the family has a wee obsession with Wales. So it was only natural it be one of the first countries we’d ‘travel’ to in our ongoing weekly ‘travel the world’ homeschool lessons.
It all started with my great-grandmother who used to rent a small cottage in Wales, in a village called Myvod. My mother had fond memories of visiting there as a girl. So, when my parents were first married in 1971 they went and lived in that same cottage for a while. Memories of that time would keep my parents returning to the area, including with my sister and I. I have spent many months in Wales over the years and have celebrated Christmas there four times now.
As my sister and I had children of our own, it was a dream of my parents that we would also spend Christmas there together. We were waiting until the youngest grandchild was old enough. Unfortunately we never got the chance. My father passed away just a couple months after my youngest son was born. But the following year, the rest of us did make the trip. Wales is forever the first place we visited as a complete family of five!
I created this recipe based on a few videos we watched on YouTube of people sharing their family recipes for Welsh Cake. We took the common elements and made a couple modifications to suit our pantry. For example, using using raisins instead of currents and butter instead of lard (to make them vegetarian).
The dough was pretty easy to come together. The kids enjoyed rolling it out and using the cutter to cut out the individual cakes. They also cook fairly quickly in the pan. The result is a nice texture, similar to a biscuit (though not as puffy). The flavour is a pleasant balance, not too savory, but not too sweet. This makes Welsh Cakes pretty versatile. You can enjoy them for afternoon tea, but also along side soup for lunch. We’ve also taken them for a nice treat to enjoy for a picnic.
I can imagine we’ll continue to enjoy them year round. Welsh Cakes are cooked on the stove, so I’m sure we’ll make them a ton as the weather heats up. They are a great way to enjoy fresh baking without contributing to the heat by running the oven!
- 2 CUPS ALL PURPOSE FLOUR
- 1/3 CUP SUGAE
- 1 TSP BAKING POWDER
- 1/2 TSP GROUND NUTMEG (OR MACE)
- 1/4 TSP SALT
- 1 PINCH GROUND CINNAMON
- 1/2 CUP COLD BUTTER
- 1 LARGE EGG beaten until frothy
- 1/2 CUP RAISINS
- 2-3 TBSPS MILK
- In a bowl combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, mace/nutmeg and cinnamon.
- Mix in the butter using your fingers or a food processor until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
- Add the raisins and stir to combine.
- Add the beaten egg and work it into the mixture adding a little milk as needed until you have a soft dough. It should not be wet or sticky.
- Wrap the dough and refrigerate for 30 minutes. (Dough can be made well in advance and chilled until ready to use.)
- Roll the dough out onto a floured or non-stick surface about 1/4 inch thick. Cut out rounds using a biscuit cutter. Gather up the scraps, knead together and roll out again to cut the remaining rounds.
- Heat and lightly butter a cast iron pan over medium heat. Add the cakes and cook on each side until lightly browned, about 3-4 minutes (lower the heat if needed to prevent the outside from burning before the interior is done).
- Best eaten while a little warm. Reheat Welsh Cakes in a pan, toaster, or warmed oven (or if in a hurry, in the microwave for a few seconds).