Lately, finding an interesting and original recipe that could be prepared in a whizz has not been an easy task. My work obliges me to think about baked goods on a daily basis, so you can imagine that when I come back home, the last thing I can think about (or want to think about, as a matter of fact) is food. When Friday arrives, I have no ideas left!
Anyway, after scratching my head and going through my cookery books as well as every possible site or blog, I have finally found a recipe that is both simple to make, worth the attention and that brings me back to childhood.
As I'm going through a "back to the roots" phaze and want to learn more about my second country of origin's culinary habits and recipes, I decided to blog about a treat that has always held a important place in my heart as it's linked to my English grandparents and to wonderful memories I have of my summer holidays in Belper (Derbyshire) and Stratford-Upon-Avon (Warwickshire).
Spending my holidays in England was the highlight of the year. Not only did I get to see many beautiful places and discover wonderful custums, but it was also the opportunity for me to stay with my grandparents whom I only got to see once a year.
My grandmother has always been a great cook and baker. She loves making homemade meals and refused to buy anything processed. Both my grandparents managed two youth hostels (they were the wardens) and there my grandmother's knowledge as well as skills were very helpful when it came to preparing food for crowds and being the big boss in the kitchen. My grandfather also played an important role. He was a great "sous chef" and peeled, grated and chopped vegetables like a pro. Together they worked like a team.
When they retired, my grandmother decided to join the "Women's Institute" and baked for the WI market which was held twice a week. Then again, both worked hand in hand and they produced astronomical quantities of scones, Bakewell tarts, bread loaves, quiches, fruit cakes, Eccles cakes, mince pies, etc... Seeing them work busily in their tiny cottage kitchen was amazing!
The baked goods they produced were perfect and as good as in any bakery. One special treat I particularly loved (and still do) was "Rock Cake". As a child this name made me giggle and the looks of that "cake" amused me!
"Rock Cakes" are hybrid cookies that contain dried fruits as well as spices and share similarities with scones and fruit cake. Their rough surface makes them look like rocks, hence their unique name. This little treat originates from Great Britain, but is very popular in various parts of the world. As they are very easy to make, "Rock Cakes" can be baked with children or if you are in a rush.
Tany Ramsay's (Gordon Ramsay's wife) recipe is different from the original. With it's spice mix and dried cranberries, this fall/winter version of "Rock Cakes" is terrific and can be made for all occasions, and especially during the end of year holidays (Thanksgiving or Christmas).
This irresistibly buttery, crumbly and soft tea treat is absolutely delightful, regressive to please and so satisfying! I love the simplicity of those "Rock Cakes" and their addictive old-fashioned taste that'll make you go back to the kitchen for more.
~ Rock Cakes ~
Recipe by Tana Ramsay and adapted by Rosa @ Rosa's Yummy Yums.
Makes 8 Rock Cakes.
225g Plain flour
The zest of 2 organic oranges
50g Light brown sugar
1 Tsp Baking powder
1 Tsp Ground cinnamon
1/4 Tsp Ground nutmeg
1/4 Tsp Salt
100g Unsalted butter, softened
55g Dried cranberries
1 Large Egg, beaten
4 Tbs Milk
Ingredients for the frosting:
90g Confectioner's sugar
3-4 Tsp Milk
1. Preheat the oven to 180° C (350° F) and cover the baking sheet with baking paper.
2. In a medium bowl, mix together the flour, zest, sugar, baking powder, cinnamon and salt. Rub the butter into the flour mixture and add the dried cranberries.
3. Mix the beaten egg together with the milk.
4. Add this liquid mixture to the flour mixture and mix to a stiff dough.
5. Using a spoon or a ice cream scoop, make eight mounds out of the dough.
6. Place the mounds onto the baking sheet and bake for 10-15 minutes until the tops are a light golden brown.
7. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, mix the confectioner's sugar with the milk.
8. Remove from the oven, frost them immediately (with a brush) and cool on a rack.
Don't allow the Rock Cakes to overcook, as they will continue to cook slightly when taken out of the oven.
Serve those "Rock Cakes" whenever you want and accompany with tea, coffee or cold milk.
~ Rock Cakes ~
Recette par Tana Ramsay et adaptée par Rosa @ Rosa's Yummy Yums.
Pour 8 Rock Cakes.
100g Beurre non-salé, ramolli
225g Farine blanche
55g Cranberries séchées
Le zeste de 2 oranges bio
50g de Sucre brun clair
1 Gros oeuf
1 CC de Poudre à lever/cake
1 CC de Cannelle en poudre
1/4 CC de Noix de muscade moulue
4 CS de Lait
Ingrédients pour le glaçage:
90g de Sucre glace
3-4 CS de Lait
1. Précahuffer le four à 180° C et recouvrir la plaque avec du papier sulfurisé.
2. Dans un bol moyen, mélanger la farine, le zeste, le sucre, la poudre à lever et le sel. Mélanger du bout des doigts (comme pour une pâte sablée) le beurre pour l'écraser et l'incorporer dans les ingrédients secs, puis ajouter les cranberries.
3. Mélanger l'oeuf battu avec le lait.
4. Ajouter ce mélange au mélange sec et bien l'incorporer afin d'obtenir une pâte assez compacte.
5. A l'aide d'une cuillère ou de vos mains, former 8 tas avec la pâte.
6. Mettre ces tas sur la plaque et cuire pendant 10-15 minutes ou jusqu'à ce qu'ils soient dorés.
7. Pendant ce temps, dans un petit bol, mélanger ensemble le sucre en poudre avec le lait.
8. Sortir les Rock Cakes du four, les glacer à l'aide d'un pinceau à pâtisserie et les laisser refroidir sur une grille.
Etant donné que les Rock Ckaes continuent un peu à cuire une fois sortis du four, ne les cuisez pas trop longtemps.
Idées de présentation:
Servir les "Rock Cakes" accompagnés de thé, café ou de lait froid à toute heure de la journée.