Delight in the charm of Eccles cake with our authentic recipe. A flaky, sweet pastry filled with nostalgia. Try it today for a taste of tradition!
Why are they called Eccles Cakes?
Eccles cakes are named after the town of Eccles, which is located in Greater Manchester, England. These sweet pastries have been associated with Eccles since the 18th century and have become a popular regional delicacy in the United Kingdom.
The exact origin of Eccles cakes is a bit unclear, but they are believed to have been created by a local baker in Eccles. Over time, the name “Eccles cake” became synonymous with this particular type of pastry, which typically consists of a flaky pastry shell filled with a mixture of currants, sugar, and sometimes spices. The cakes are often small, round, and quite sweet, making them a popular treat or snack.
Eccles cakes have gained popularity beyond the town of Eccles and are now enjoyed throughout the UK and in other parts of the world. The name has stuck with them, preserving their historical association with the town of Eccles.
Best Eccles Cakes Recipe
For the Pastry:
- 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup unsalted butter, chilled and diced
- 5-6 tablespoons ice-cold water
For the Filling:
- 1 ½ cups currants
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
- Zest of 1 lemon
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
- Powdered sugar (optional)
Preparing the Pastry:
- In a mixing bowl, combine the flour and salt.
- Add the chilled, diced butter to the flour mixture.
- Using a pastry cutter or your fingers, work the butter into the flour until it resembles coarse breadcrumbs.
- Gradually add the ice-cold water, one tablespoon at a time, and mix until the dough just comes together. Be careful not to overmix.
- Form the dough into a disc, wrap it in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
Creating the Filling:
- In a bowl, combine the currants, granulated sugar, ground nutmeg, ground cinnamon, ground allspice, and lemon zest. Mix well.
Assembling the Eccles Cakes:
- Preheat your oven to 400°F (200°C). Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- On a lightly floured surface, roll out the chilled pastry dough into a thin rectangle, approximately 1/8 inch thick.
- Cut the dough into rounds, about 4 inches in diameter. You can use a cookie cutter or a glass for this.
- Place a spoonful of the currant filling in the center of each pastry round.
- Brush the edges of the pastry rounds with melted butter.
- Fold the pastry over the filling to create a half-moon shape. Press the edges to seal.
- Using a sharp knife, make a few small slits on the top of each pastry to allow steam to escape.
- Place the assembled Eccles cakes on the prepared baking sheet.
- Optionally, you can sprinkle a little granulated sugar or dust with powdered sugar for extra sweetness.
- Bake in the preheated oven for 15-20 minutes, or until the pastry is golden brown and crisp.
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