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Oast Cakes

Named after the distinctive hop-drying houses that dot the Kent countryside, these cakes were originally eaten after the crop had been gathered. They are like thin, fried scones, and are good served lightly dredged with sugar or with cherry jam.

ingredients

makes 12
225 g (8 oz) plain flour
2.5 ml (1/2 tsp)salt
2.5 ml (1/2 tsp) baking powder
50 g (2 oz) lard, diced
40 g (1 1/2 oz) caster sugar
75 g (3 oz) currants
45 ml (3 tbsp) vegetable oil
25 g (1 oz) butter

method

1. Put the flour, salt and baking powder into a bowl, then rub in the lard until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs.

2. Stir in the sugar and currants, then mix with 45 - 60 ml (3 - 4 tbsp) water to make a soft dough.

3. Turn out on to a lightly floured surface and roll out until 1 cm (1/2 inch) thick. Using a 5 cm (2 inch) plain :utter, cut out 12 rounds.

4. Heat the oil and the butter in a heavy-based frying pan and fry the cakes for 2 - 3 minutes on each side, until golden brown. Drain on kitchen paper. Eat warm or very fresh.

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