pice ar y maen- cakes on the stone

These traditional Welsh Cakes would normally be baked on a baking stone over a fire.  In fact, the Welsh name for these cakes is ‘pice ar y maen’ which translates to ‘cakes on the stone’.

Perhaps you’ve heard of them referred to as griddle scones.  They can be served warm or cold with butter and are a remarkably flexible food.

image1I’m from Wales originally but now live in West Yorkshire.  When my husband and I were married last July in Snowdonia, North Wales, we served traditional Welsh Cakes with champagne – that’s how traditional and versatile the Welsh Cake is!

Of course, our wedding Welsh Cakes had a romantic spin to them.  The cakes were shaped like hearts, compliments of my sister-in-law, and were made with cranberries and white chocolate instead of the traditional currants.

image2If you aren’t planning to serve your Welsh Cakes at a fancy affair with flutes of champagne, rest assured that these cakes also pair perfectly with a ‘paned’, which is simply a cup of tea.

Besides the cakes’ versatility, I appreciate that Welsh Cakes are easy enough to make so that the whole family can get involved.  I have fond memories of baking these with my Nain, which is Welsh for grandma, when I was a young girl.  I also remember how I loved eating the dough before it was baked!

image3

Now, the recipe can yield more than 16 servings.  I just put that as the approximate serving size since I still love the dough!  However, if you behave yourself and you don’t eat any of the unbaked mixture, then you may just have a few more golden-delicious Welsh Cakes than I normally produce.

As for the ingredients, most of you will likely have many of the main ingredients already in your cupboards.  That makes this recipe even easier.  With St David’s Day coming up on 1st March, I highly recommend giving these Welsh Cakes a go!

Welsh Cakes – recipe

Makes approximately 16 Welsh Cakes

Ingredients

250g plain flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
Pinch of salt
Large pinch of mixed spice or cinnamon
125g butter, diced
100g caster sugar
85g currants
1 egg
3 tbsp milk
Caster sugar for dusting

Method

  1.  Sift the flour, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon into a large mixing bowl.

  2. Add the butter and rub it into the flour with your fingertips until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs.

  3. Stir in the caster sugar and the currants.

  4.  Lightly beat the egg and stir it into the flour mixture.

  5. Slowly add the milk to gather the mixture into a soft dough.

  6.  Transfer to a lightly floured surface and roll out to about 1/4 inch thick.

  7. With a 3 inch cutter, cut out rounds, gathering up the offcuts and re-rolling to make more.

  8.  Heat a frying pan over medium to low heat. Smear a little butter or oil over the pan and cook the cakes in small batches, for about 2 to 3 minutes on each side until they are slightly risen, golden brown, and cooked through.

  9.  Transfer to a wire rack, dust with caster sugar on both sides and leave to cool.

These Welsh Cakes are a lovely treat.  They’re fast to make and tasty to eat.  I encourage you to give them your own twist by adding your favourite topping and enjoying them with your loved ones for St David’s Day or any time you want to have homemade, golden deliciousness that warms your hearth and your heart.