5 December 2011

My Favourite Christmas... by Lucy Dillon

Welcome back to my Christmas 2011 feature! As you know, I've asked lots of authors to write something about their favourite Christmas, and I've been lucky to have a great response. Today, I have the pleasure of welcoming the delightful Lucy Dillon!

Right. Here's my recipe for a cosy pre-Christmas evening in, straight from my cosy, if somewhat spooky corner of the Welsh borders...
You will need: The Secret of Happy Ever After, a pot of tea, a roaring fire, and some Welshcakes. (Dog is optional, but adds an extra boost of warmth to the proceedings, if fire not available.)


225g/8oz self raising flour

85g/3oz caster sugar
1/2 tsp mixed spice
110g/4oz butter
1 egg
some sultanas or mixed peel (what ever you have left over from the Christmas cake!)
milk, if needed

Butter for greasing the griddle & granulated sugar for dusting the cakes.

1. Stir the flour, spice and sugar together, then rub the butter into the flour until you have breadcrumbs.

2. add the dried fruit
3. beat the egg lightly and add, squishing together until the mixture forms a ball. Add a little milk if needed, but don't make the dough sloppy.
4. dust a flat surface with flour, then roll out the dough to a thickness of your finger (technical term there, obv) then cut into rounds with a pastry cutter. If you don't have a cutter, then either use a small glass or just cut into squares with a knife.
5. melt a little butter in a heavy-based frying pan or griddle and heat - it needs to be quite hot to cook the welshcakes, but don't let the butter burn. Some recipes don't grease the griddle, but only you know how non-stick your frying pan is! The butter isn't for frying the cakes, just stopping them from sticking. Cook for 2-3 mins each side, until they turn a deep caramel colour.
6. Dust with sugar, and eat warm from the pan (yum) or with jam and more butter (double yum).

Take a large plate of Welshcakes, make pot of tea, settle yourself in a big chair with book, and apply to face.

What with the spices and the dried fruit, these also make great last-minute Christmassy gifts for work colleagues or friends - Lakeland and Waitrose both sell pretty biscuit gift bags that you can fill  up, and then tie with ribbon. But don't give them to your dog as raisins/sultanas are poisonous for them!

You can buy Lucy's wonderful new book The Secret of Happy Ever After at Amazon in paperback or on eBook now. You can also read my review of it here

1 comment:

  1. Just to clarify - that's HALF a teaspoon of mixed spice, not one to two!