Lardy cake is a typical English tea bread full of with lard, spices, sugar and dried fruit.
- 250g strong white bread flour, plus extra for dusting
- 150ml warm water
- 5g powdered dried yeast
- 5g salt
- 160g lard
- 50g sultanas
- 50g currants
- 50g candied peel, chopped
- 50g caster sugar
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1 tsp mixed spice
- Grease a deep 20cm square baking tin. Put the flour, water, yeast and salt into a bowl and mix until a soft dough is formed.
- Melt 10g of the lard and incorporate it into the dough. Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and knead with your hands until smooth and elastic. Place in a clean bowl, cover with clingfilm and leave to prove in a warm place for at least an hour until risen and doubled in size.
- In another bowl, mix the sultanas, currants and candied peel together along with the sugar, cinnamon and mixed spice. Cut the remaining lard into small cubes.
- Tip the risen dough out onto a clean work surface and press all over with your fingertips to knock it back until almost back to its original size. Roll out into a rectangle approximately 1cm thick. Scatter half of the dried fruit mixture and half the cubed lard over the dough then roll up starting from one of the short sides to enclose the filling.
- Turn the dough 90˚ then roll out into a 1cm thick rectangle as before. Scatter the remaining fruit and lard over the dough and roll up starting from one of the short ends. Roll out the dough into a 20cm square, place in the prepared baking tin and leave to rise for a further 30 mins.
- Preheat the oven to 200˚C/180˚C fan/gas mark 6. Bake for 30-40 mins until well risen and golden brown. Leave to cool in the tin for 10-15 mins then invert onto a cooling rack. Placing the lardy cake upside down will encourage the melted lard to absorb back into the dough as it cools completely. Serve sliced, warm or cold.