Eccles Cakes are very much a family favourite. Being from a Lancashire background my Mother and Grandmother would regularly make these little treats. Typically they would make them when they had some leftover puff pastry but my children love them so much I make up a whole batch and then freeze them as needed. They are not ‘cakes’ of course but dried fruit filled pasties. Follow my recipe and video for making your own gluten free puff pastry – it’s a great recipe and never fails. I like to soak the mixed fruit in a little ginger kefir or apple juice prior to using so that the filling is really moist.
Difficulty – Moderate
Time – 20 minutes cooking
What’s good about it?
You can use the gluten free puff pastry for both sweet and savoury recipes. The pastry can also be frozen for up to 3 months.
- Make up your puff pastry according to my recipe. Chill for 30 minutes before using.
- To make the Eccles cakes, roll out the pastry until it’s just a little thicker than a £1 coin and cut out 6-8 rounds about 12cm across. Re-roll the trimming if needed.
- Place a good heaped tablespoon of fruit mixture in the middle of each round, brush the edges of the rounds with the beaten egg, then gather the pastry around the filling and squeeze it together. Flip them over so the smooth top is upwards and pat them into a smooth round. Flatten each round with a rolling pin to an oval until the fruit just starts to poke through, then place on a baking tray.
- Cut 2 little slits in each Eccles cakes, brush generously with beaten egg and sprinkle with the xylitol.
- Place on a tray and bake in a preheated oven at 220C/200C fan/gas 8.
- Bake the Eccles cakes for 15-20 mins until just golden. Leave to cool on a rack and enjoy while still warm or eat cold.
- These can also freeze for up to 3 months.
Did You Know?
The origins of these pastries can be traced to the town of Eccles, formerly within the Lancashire boundary, but now a suburb of Manchester. Many families have their own recipes – this may include mincemeat with apples and sometimes a little rum or brandy for a special festive treat.
One batch of my Gluten Free Puff Pastry
100g mixed dried fruit
1-2tbsp apple juice / water kefir to soak the fruit
1 egg, lightly beaten
Xylitol for scattering