by Clare Nisbet
Now that I am nestled comfortably back in the chair at the Goleta desk of One Sorry Blog, I felt I should get to cooking and back to my Scottish roots. I am currently without permanent digs and therefore enjoying the privilege of using Mary Nisbet’s kitchen; rivaled only by that of Martha Stewart. Needing a last minute contribution to a baby shower this weekend, I turned to a Scottish favorite – Rock Cakes.
These little Scottish cakes are like scones without the fuss. You can almost always make them with ingredients you already have in the cupboard, they are supposed to look bumpy and lumpy so you don’t need pastry skills, and they bake in 20 minutes with as little as 10 minutes prep time. Traditional recipes use raisins but for the holidays I mixed in cranberries, cherries, and other dried fruit. They are always best right out of the oven and a hit. Here is a recipe to get started but, as always, the recipe is better the more you add your own personal touches.
1 stick (8oz) butter
1 cup flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp all spice
Rind of half a lemon (or orange, lime, etc.)
8oz chopped dried fruits
1/2 cup sugar
Milk to add if necessary
To prepare combine the butter, flour, and baking powder in a mixer until you make a mixture with the consistency of breadcrumbs. Add the dried fruit, sugar, fruit rind (optional), all spice, and mix thoroughly. Add the eggs and mix thoroughly until your mixture hardens into a doughball. If needed, add a pinch of milk for consistency.
Grab of crude balls of dough (the lumpier and more rock-like the better!) and bake at 400 degrees for 15-20 minutes. Watch the little suckers because they get overcooked very quickly.
Hope they help your holiday party. Stay tuned for more recipes from Martha’s… I mean Mary’s kitchen.