Old-Fashioned Rock Cakes

cook 30 mins
  • 250 g (8 oz) self-raising flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon mixed spice
  • 125 g (4 oz) cold butter, diced
  • 100 g (3 1/2 oz) demerara or granulated sugar, plus extra for sprinkling
  • 1 teaspoon grated orange rind (optional)
  • 125 g (4 oz) mixed dried fruit
  • 50 g (2 oz) mixed peel or chopped glacé cherries, or extra mixed dried fruit
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • 3–4 tablespoons milk
  • Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F), Gas Mark 4, and line a baking sheet with baking paper. Place the flour, baking powder and mixed spice in a food processor with the butter and pulse until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. Tip into a large bowl, then stir in the sugar, orange rind, if using, dried fruit and mixed peel.
  • Pour in the beaten egg and add enough milk to bind the mixture to a soft, slightly sticky dough.
  • Use 2 forks to make 8 rock-like mounds of the mixture on the prepared baking tray. Sprinkle with a little extra sugar and cook in the preheated oven for 18–20 minutes, until the rock cakes are golden and a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean. Transfer to a wire rack to cool a little before serving.
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