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Welsh Cakes with Dried Apricots and Candied Ginger

Rose was going on and on about how incredibly easy and delicious Welsh cakes were, so I had to make them! But I couldn’t find my nutmeg and had to substitute mace, and then it occurred to me that I have slightly more flavorful turbinado sugar around, and then I glanced upon the candied ginger and dried apricots when hunting for the currants… and how could I resist messing with the recipe then?

These are sort of pancake-ish, sort of scone-ish, and really fantastic for breakfast. You can make the dough in advance (though really, it comes together very quickly), and the cakes are fried up in an ungreased pan just before serving (none of them lasted long enough to test whether they’re still good the next day).

Also, I’m still a Hipstamatic addict:

2008: Goose Stew
2007: Curried Cauliflower
2006: Freeform Caramel Prawn Pies

Welsh Cakes with Dried Apricots and Candied Ginger
(blatantly stolen and tweaked from King Arthur Flour’s recipe)
3 C (12 3/4 oz) King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
1 C (7 oz) turbinado sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground mace
1 C (8 oz) cold unsalted butter, cut into smallish chunks of some sort
2 1/2 oz (a bit under 1/2 C) candied ginger, chopped into currant-sized chunks
3 oz (a bit over 1/2 C) dried apricots, chopped into currant-sized chunks
2 large eggs beaten with enough milk to yield 3/4 C liquid

1. Get a bigger bowl than you think you’ll need, and whisk together the powdery ingredients (flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and mace).

2. Smoosh in the butter by hand (I love my nitrile gloves for this sort of messy operation) until the mixture is fairly evenly crumbly – as with scones, a few bigger chunks of butter remaining will be just fine.

3. Mix in the candied ginger and dried apricots.

4. Mix in the milk/egg mixture, until the everything is fairly evenly moistened.

5. With this sort of sticky dough, I like to roll it out between two sheets of floured wax paper. So, get a big sheet of wax paper out onto your counter. Sprinkle it liberally with flour. Turn the sticky, moist dough out onto it, and flour it on top until you can gently pat it into a nice mount. Cut the mound of dough in half, and shape each half into a thick 4″-ish disc. Wrap one of the disks in plastic wrap and stick it in the fridge.

6. Roll the other disc of dough between two floured sheets of wax paper until it’s about 1/4″ thick.

(To keep dough from sicking, I tend to occasionally pull off the top sheet of wax paper, sprinkle on some more flour, put it back down, flip over the whole operation, pull off the formerly-bottom-now-top sheet of wax paper, sprinkle on some more flour (or spread the remaining flour around a bit more evenly), and keep going.)

7. Using a 2 1/2″ to 3 1/2″ round cookie cutter (or the rim of an appropriately sized wine glass), cut the dough into circles. Gather and re-roll the scraps, cutting until you’ve used all the dough. Or if you don’t care about circularity, cut it into squares. Whatever makes you happy.

8. Heat an ungreased (yes, really!) non-stick (possibly not necessary, but that’s what I used) pan (or skillet or griddle) over medium heat.

9. Fry the cakes for about 2 1/2 minutes on each side, until they’re golden brown and cooked all the way through. Definitely try just one sample cake at a time for the first few until you’ve figured out the right temperature, and then of course do as many at once as you can manage.

10. Transfer the fried cakes to a rack to cool. Don’t expect them to actually have time to cool before they are scarfed down by everyone in the immediate vicinity.

11. Repeat with the refrigerated dough. After you roll it out and cut it, let the circles (or whatever shapes) warm at room temperature for about 10 minutes before frying.

12. King Arthur Flour suggested dusting the cakes with cinnamon-sugar or splitting them and smearing on some butter and jam. Personally, I think they’re dead perfect eaten totally plain, straight out of the oven. Though they certainly do go well with tea.

Yield: About 6 people worth of breakfast around these here parts.

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7 Responses to “Welsh Cakes with Dried Apricots and Candied Ginger”

  1. Errin says:

    I have never even heard of these before…but I have been on the lookout for new recipes to add the the weekend breakfast rotation…so I can’t wait to try these!

  2. Yoko says:

    Thankyou for publishing this! My Welsh grandmother used to make these with currants or without for the non-raisin lovers. I’ve always loved them.

  3. Suzanne says:

    This recipe look amazing. I think the apricots and candied ginger go really well together. I’ve been trying to use more ginger in recipes and find that it is really a versatile ingredient!

  4. mr.ed says:

    Try the dried fruit and mace with boxed corn bread mix. Or try chopped onions and jalapenos with the mix.

  5. Red Foodie says:

    Healthy and delicious…thanks for sharing this recipe. I would definitely try this at home.

  6. Brindes says:

    I love pancakes, I love ginger, I love breakfeast, so, your experiment is definitely welcome to one of my experiments too ! Nice idea =)

  7. Allan Ber says:

    Thanks Danielle for the inspirational recipes- this one turned out
    Pretty yummy. They don’t take long and I liked the ginger apricot
    Combo. I might add cinnamon to the mix or try a savory combination.

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April 2011
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