This Lardy cake recipe is from episode 6 (season 1) of The Fabulous Baker Brothers, Tom is a master baker and this is his recipe for an old fashioned sticky cake that tastes way better than it’s name would have you think.
More importantly this lardy cake recipe is our family recipe and we sell masses of this traditional cake from our shops in Gloucestershire.
Line 2 x 15cm cake tins or enamel pie dishes with greaseproof paper.
Weigh the flour, salt and lard into a big bowl. Mix the yeast into the warm water then empty the mixture into the bowl and stir all the ingredients together.
Knead the dough for 15 minutes (or 10 minutes in an electric mixer). Once you have a smooth and elastic dough nestle it back into the bowl and cover in cling film with no air gaps. Leave it in a warm place to rise to twice its size or for 1 hour, whichever is first.
Meanwhile make the lard and sugar mix by mixing them together until they’re combined in a mixer or with a wooden spoon. To slightly soften the the lard just warm it a bit in a bowl over a saucepan of hot water.
When it’s rested, divide the dough into 2 pieces. Mould the dough into round shapes and then on a well-floured table, with a rolling pin, roll the balls out into 20cm discs.
Using a pallet knife, spread a layer of sweet lard mix onto each disc. Then fold the dough; this requires you to take an outside edge and pull into the middle, your circle now has a straight edge with a corner at each end. Looking at it clockwise, take the bottom corner and pull the corner into the middle and push the dough down with your palm. Now working clockwise pick up the bottom corner and continue to work your way around, pulling the bottom corner into the centre until you’ve worked your way all around.
Roll the discs out again and then spread all but a tablespoon of the sweet lard mix on top. Sprinkle with some raisins and currants and fold as before, then roll out to fit your round cake tins.
Put the remainder of the sweet lard mix in the bottom of each tin and spread it around to cover the bottom and sides. Then sprinkle a generous tablespoon of sugar over the lard mix and place the dough on top, with the flat side on the bottom and the layered, knotted side on top. Cover and leave in a warm place to rise for 2 hours.
After 2 hours, preheat the oven to 210°C/fan 190°C/gas mark 6½. Bake the lardy cake for 45 minutes until you can just lift the cake from the tin using the small pallet knife and the cake is golden all over. Take care to bake the base well so it caramelises (baking on a pre-heated baking stone, or a heavy metal tray will really help this) but doesn't burn.
Leave the cake to cool in the tin for half an hour until the caramelised lard toffee has set a bit. Then tip out onto grease proof paper and serve sunny side up.
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