Saturday, 26 May 2012

Tantangan KBB # 29 Eccless Cake

My 3rd challenges for this year. Eccless cake.
What is Eccless cake?. According to wikipedia :

Eccles cakes are named after the English town of Eccles. It is not known who invented the recipe, but James Birch is credited with being the first person to sell Eccles cakes on a commercial basis, which he sold from his shop at the corner of Vicarage Road and St Mary’s Road (now known as Church Street) in the town centre, in 1793.[1]

Nicknames for the Eccles cake include Squashed Fly Cake, Fly Cake, Fly Pie or even a Fly's Graveyard, owing to the appearance of the currants that it contains. Eccles cakes do not currently have Protected Geographical Status, so may be manufactured anywhere and still labelled as "Eccles" cakes.[2]

I never try eccless cake before and judging from the recipe, it's going to be a long process to bake yet fun. Let's hoping that the pastry will light & eccless cake taste delicious

Eccless Cake

The recipe as below  (Source From Here )

Eccles Cakes
Makes about 50 smallish cakes

6 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 cinnamon stick
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
Peel from 2 lemons
Peel from 2 oranges
2 cups dried currants
1/2 cup golden raisins
2 tablespoons brandy
1/4 cup fresh-squeezed lemon juice

Melt the butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Add the spices and peel and fry until they are fragrant in the butter. Add the fruit, brandy, and juice. Simmer for ten or fifteen minutes, stirring occasionally. Let cool, then put in the fridge overnight to let the flavors really meld.

Puff Pastry
1 pound (4 sticks) unsalted butter
4 cups AP flour
1 teaspoon salt
Between 1 and 1/2 cups ice water

Take three of the sticks of butter and slice them in half lengthwise and then again widthwise. Arrange them into a rectangle on a large piece of wax paper. Put another piece of wax paper on top and roll them the butter out into a 9x12-inch rectangle between the sheets of waxed paper. Chill for at least four hours.

Put the four cups of flour into a food processor. Cut up the remaining stick of butter and add it, bit by bit, to the flour and pulse into dusty crumbs. Dump the butter-flour crumbs into a big bowl and add ice water gradually, stirring, just until the dough comes together. Knead for a couple minutes until smooth. Wrap and refrigerate four hours or overnight.

Roll the dough out into a 1/4-inch-thick rectangle and place the butter rectangle on top. Fold the corners of the dough over the butter and roll out to its previous size. Fold the sides of the dough up to the middle, like folding a piece of paper into thirds, then fold it again in half — like closing a book. You're working the butter into the dough in finer and finer layers; the butter if it stays cold will puff the pastry up in delicious and spectacular ways when you're finished. Wrap this parcel well and put back in the fridge for at least an hour or two.

Take the dough out and roll the parcel out into the rectangle again, then repeat the folding process. This is working the butter into the pastry in finer and finer layers. Continue this process - rolling out, then folding. These are called turns. Do at least four turns - six or more is even better. It's very simple: the longer you let the dough rest and chill between turns, and the more turns you do, the lighter and flakier your pastry will be. I did five turns over the course of about 8 hours, and mine was fine - but if I was doing some other kind of pastry I would definitely let it sit overnight at least once.

1 egg, beaten
Coarse sugar

Heat the oven to 375°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Take a third of the the puff pastry dough from the fridge. It should be very cold and firm, but not hard. Roll it out to a thickness of about 1/8-inch.

Cut small circles - I used a biscuit cutter that gave me four-inch circles. You could do larger, but I wanted a lot of individual pastries. Put a small dollop of filling (about 1 teaspoon) in the center of each dough circle.

Fold in half, like a potsticker dumpling, and seal the edges with your fingers. Now bring the two pointy edges up and fold them in the center, on the curved seam. Flatten out the little pouch with your fingers, and roll it into a small circle - just thin enough that the filling shows through the dough a little. Try not to let it leak out, though. Make two or three shallow slashes in the top of the finished round cake.

Brush with beaten egg, and sprinkle with sugar. (Note: I think that my pastry dough was pretty warm by this point, from all the handling and rolling. I didn't try this at the time, but in the future I think I would put the finished, unbaked pans of cakes in the fridge or freezer to let them chill again - maybe for an hour. This would make a higher, lighter pastry.)

Bake for about 20 minutes, or until golden brown and puffy. Try not to eat one immediately - the hot raisin filling will scorch your mouth - believe me, I know. These are amazingly good even a few days later.


I only use half of the recipe for this challenge

Here's step by step in baking Eccless Cake


First, I have to make butter block. It's not difficult to do. Basically, what you need to do is to roll out the butter and chill it in the fridge for 4 hours (since I only use half of the recipe i only chill it for 2 hours)

Next, preparing the flour for the dough. Put the flour into food processor &
add butter bit by bit to the flour and pulse into dusty crumb. Once its ready, dump the flour-butter crumbs into a bowl add water gradually until it comes together. Knead the dough for few minutes until smooth. Wrap & refrigerate  for 2 hours.
(my son insisted to hold the dough for me)

After 2 hours, get the butter block & dough out from the fridge. Roll out the dough and place butter block on the top. Fold the corners of the dough over the butter, roll out to its previous size. Fold the sides of the dough to the middle then fold it again in half. You have to make sure that the butter & dough are mixed together. Wrap it and refrigerate for 2 hours.

While waiting puff pastry ready, it's a perfect time to make the filling. Melt the butter & spice in saucepan until its fragrant. Pour the currants and juice,stirring occasionally . Let cool and then leave it in the fridge for 2 hours.

Assembly time - Finally it's time to assembly the
dough & filling to make Eccless Cake. Get the dough & filling out from the fridge. Roll out the dough & cut it to round shape. Place the filling in the middle. brush the edge with water to sealed it. Fold in half then bring the two pointy edges up and fold them in the center, on the curved seam. Flatten out the little pouch with your finger and roll it to round shape. Make three slashes on the top of the finished round cake. Brushed the cake with beaten eggs & sprinkle with sugar. Bake for 20 minutes or until its golden brown.

And after hours spent in the kitchen, I proudly present Eccless Cake

"Puff pastry and currants taste beautiful. This challenge boost my confidence. The puff pastry so light I couldn't believe I made it from scratch 

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