When we were small we would go to Hampsthwaite, near Harrogate to see family and would sometimes have tea at Betty's
as a treat. My favourites were (and are) always Fat Rascals and pink pigs.
My Aunt Elsie (great Aunt, actually) had escaped industrial Teesside, and Haverton Hill in particular, having married a market gardener and moved to Yorkshire where she baked and iced cakes professionally. It always seemed like an ideal lifestyle to me and I always quite fancied being her. I have the genetically low-slung bust but don't quite manage to pull off the floral crimpelene and haven't quite reached the age where a grey cauliflower perm seems like a good idea. There's time yet, though.
Anyway, I still bake from her notes and Aunt Elsie's Rock Cakes are, in my opinion, as good as, if not better than Fat Rascals.
As a fellow cake enthusiast was coming for coffee, I made a batch today.
This is the recipe:
2 teaspoons baking powder
Grated rind of a lemon (no white)
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg or mixed spice (I prefer nutmeg)
8oz mixed dried fruit (usually use half and half mix of sultanas and raisins)
4oz glace cherries
2oz flaked almonds
1 beaten egg
4 tablespoons of milk.
Rub butter into flour and baking powder, add other dry ingredients and stir. Mix in egg and milk. Spoon into lumps onto baking sheet covered with baking parchment - allowing room for them to spread while cooking. Bake in middle of 150 degree oven until firm and golden. Remove from oven while still soft and cool to firm up. Eat warm while no-one is looking!
Finished a pair of socks for me last night:
They are in handpainted 4ply merino and they are for me! I think the wool is a Cherry Hill yarn, but I've lost the band. There's enough left to make a pair for the whole family, though.