We are having visitors for the weekend and I know they like rock cakes so I thought we would make some. Rock cakes are a very British cake so for those of you who don't know about them they are nicer than the sound. My friend Zack Rabbit tells me that Harry Potter is very fond of them. This is interesting because the recipe we use calls them Old Harry Rock cakes. We do make some changes to that recipe though. My new young brother Yaya is helping me cook for the first time so I will have to tell him what to do.
The first thing is to get the ingredients ready, you need:
8 oz of self-raising flour
4 oz of butter
4 oz of demerara sugar
1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon of allspice
4 oz of mixed dried fruit
Grated rind of one lemon
1 large egg
2 tablespoons of milk (more if the mixture is too dry).
Right we have got all those ingredients so we need to weigh them out. I was showing Yaya the scales and the weights he was very interested in them.
Turn the oven on to 190 C, 375 F or gas mark 5.
Rub the butter into the flour until it resembles find breadcrumbs and stir in the spices, sugar, dried fruit, grated lemon rind, egg and milk and then stir the mixture until it resembles crumbly dough, you may need to add a little more milk but make sure you do not make the mixture too wet.
Now for the fun bit that baboons like me with big paws like best, Yaya will find it more difficult because his paws are very small. Gently squeeze and roll the mixture into about 12 small balls and put them on a tray that has been lightly greased with butter or margerine.
Put the buns in the oven.
Now here is tricky. The recipe says to leave them for 20 mins and we did that for years and it worked very well. However, recently we accidently took them out after 15 mins and they were a much nicer texture and more tasty. So really I think you might need to experiment with cooking times as all ovens are different. See what suits you and your oven.
When you take them out of the oven let them rest on the tray for 5 mins you have been doing all the work but the buns need a rest. Work that out for yourselves I can't figure it out it myself.
After 5 mins put them on a cooling rack, we put a tea towel on to stop them sticking to the rack or getting squres all over their bottoms!
I had to explain to Yaya that they are still very hot and not yet ready for eating.
Finally, make yourself a nice cup of tea or coffee, put your feet up and eat a warm rock cake. You deserve it. Well I say finally, at some point there is a lot of washing up to do, I explained to Yaya that the washing is the job of the under chef. He thought I meant him, obviously I meant our person.