Known as picau ar y maen in Welsh, meaning ‘cakes on the stone’ (they were originally cooked on a heated bakestone), these are incredibly easy to make (perfect for children too), endlessly versatile and deeply delicious. You can serve welsh cakes hot or cold, with butter, jam or ice cream, as a mid-morning snack or as a stand-alone pudding.
TEA MATCH Wonderful with a malty Assam tea. Try Fortnum & Mason’s Royal Blend.
425g plain flour, plus extra for dusting
1 tsp baking powder
1⁄4 tsp ground allspice
A pinch of salt
120g unsalted butter, at room temperature, cut into cubes, plus extra for frying
120g lard or vegetable shortening, cut into cubes
175g caster sugar
2 eggs, beaten
30ml whole milk
- Sift the flour, baking powder, allspice and salt together into a large mixing bowl. Add the butter and lard or vegetable shortening to the flour mixture then rub together with clean fingertips for 5-7 minutes, until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Stir in the sugar and raisins and combine.
- Mix the eggs and milk together, then pour into the flour mixture and stir until it forms a stiff dough. Bring the dough together with your hands in the mixing bowl until it forms a ball. Turn the dough on to a lightly floured surface and roll it out to a thickness of 1.5cm. Dip a 6cm round cutter in flour and cut 20 rounds from the dough.
- Melt a knob of butter in a heavy-bottomed frying pan over a medium heat and fry the rounds in batches for 3-4 minutes on each side, until crisp and golden. Serve warm, or keep in an airtight container for up to a week and reheat gently before serving.
Now buy the book
Our recipes are from Fortnum & Mason: Time for Tea by Tom Parker Bowles (Fourth Estate, £20). To order a copy for £17.60 until 2 May call 020 3308 9193 or go to mailshop.co.uk/books. Free p&p on orders over £20. All the teas listed here can be bought at fortnumandmason.com.
Recipes: Roger Pizey, Executive pastry chef at Fortnum & Mason. Photographs: David Loftus.