Puff Pastry Eccles Cakes

banner

Preparation info

  • Difficulty

    Medium

  • Makes

    8

Appears in

Bake

Bake

By Lorraine Pascale

Published 2017

  • About

Some say these layered pastries should be made with flaky pastry and others prefer puff pastry. I’ve opted for puff, because it gives a more refined look. You can make your own puff pastry, if you like. Alternatively you can buy ready-prepared all-butter or a low-fat puff – both work equally well, but the all-butter puff has more natural flavour. If you’re buying puff pastry, always avoid the ready-rolled version, which I find is rolled out too thinly.

Ingredients

  • 1 quantity puff pastry (here) or 500 g packet shop-bought puff pastry
  • plain flour, for dusting

For the filling

  • 1 tbsp melted butter
  • 60 g soft light brown sugar
  • 180 g mixed dried fruit
  • 50 g mixed peel
  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • ½ tsp ground ginger
  • zest of 1 orange (optional)

Equipment

  • 10cm straight-sided round cookie cutter

Method

Sprinkle some flour on a work surface and then roll out the puff pastry until it is about 5mm thick. It needs to be just big enough to cut out eight circles, each 10cm across – check by holding up the cutter. When you are happy that it is rolled to the right size, use the 10cm cutter to stamp out eight puff pastry circles and arrange them on a baking sheet. Pop the pastry into the fridge to rest for at least 10–15 minutes while you make the filling.

Put the melted butter into a bowl with rest of the filling ingredients, and then mix it all together. Take the pastry from the fridge and place 1 tablespoon of the mixture into the centre of each circle. Gather the pastry around the filling to enclose and squeeze it together, then flip it over so the top is facing upwards and gently pat it into a smooth round. Flatten a little more with the palm of your hand into an oval that’s about 7.5 x 6cm in size, and then place it onto the baking sheet. Repeat with the rest of the rounds and then put them in the fridge for 10–15 minutes to firm up.

Preheat the oven to 200°C (fan 180°C/400°F/gas 6). After the cakes have firmed up, make three little slashes in the top of each one using a small, very sharp knife. Brush the cakes all over with the beaten egg to glaze.

Mix together the demerara sugar and cinnamon and sprinkle a little bit over each Eccles cake, then bake them in the oven for 15–20 minutes, or until the pastry is puffed up and golden brown.

Remove the cakes from the oven. I love to eat them while they are still a little warm with a cup of tea, but they are also great cold. Be super careful when you eat these warm, as the fruit filling gets silly hot in the oven. I am told that these go down very well with a nice strong cheese – I am yet to try that combination though!

To decorate

  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 tbsp demerara sugar
  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon