Monday, 18 April 2011

Rock Cakes

Recipe Number Twenty Four:  Page 332.

I used to make rock cakes quite often; I suppose they were a bit of a speciality. I used a recipe out of Mary Berry's previous book (Mary Berry Cooks Cakes), to which I added glace cherries. I think they make them even yummier. They definitely seemed to be a favourite amongst family and friends. However, due to moving house and then having a baby, I haven't really baked much until recently; it was therefore nice to revisit these old friends.

I had thought this recipe would be exactly the same as the one in Mary Berry's other book, but I was surprised to find that there were some differences. The main one was that, in the Baking Bible, she uses butter instead of soft margarine. I wondered if it would make any noticeable difference to the finished result; only one way to find out!

I measured the flour and baking powder into a mixing bowl and rubbed in the butter. I felt a little sad as I added the dried fruit to the mixture; I had not added the cherries as I normally would have done, as I wanted to keep true to the recipe. All that was left to do was to mix in the milk and egg. Although the mixture combined really well, it was very dry. Mary Berry says to add a bit more milk if this is the case, so I took the milk back out of the fridge, leaving pretty doughy fingerprints on the fridge door and all over the milk bottle! I poured in just enough to make the mixture a little sticky. I put heaped spoonfuls onto my baking tray and sprinkled with Demerara sugar. Into the oven they went. After just 15 minutes my little rock cakes were cooked.

How can you not like rock cakes?!!

Neil and I tried half a rock cake each once they were cool enough to eat. Neil didn't look that keen, it has to be said!! He said they were a little dry and he preferred the ones I used to make. After telling him there was no need to look so horrified, I took a bite. Well, I have to admit it; they are quite dry and not as nice as the ones I used to bake. I wonder if it's all down to using butter, maybe the glace cherries help moisten the rock cakes. Having said all that, there is nothing wrong with them, they are still very decent rock cakes! However, maybe Mary Berry’s other recipe is more to our liking and we did miss the cherries.


  1. Hi I made rock cakes tonite and they were all dry and crumbly very disappointed don't know what went wrong..

  2. Hi Sarah, sorry to hear about your rock cakes. I know how dishearting it can be when something doesn't work out. I am not sure what recipe you used. But can I suggest you try using soft margarine instead of butter? These rock cakes were also dry and I used 100g butter. In Mary's previous book Mary Berry Cooks Cakes she uses 115g of soft margarine (Stork is good). I have always loved that recipe, works everytime. Or you could try adding a little more milk, so you have a stiff but slightly sticky mixture. I hope that might help. If you try again let me know if your results are any better - good luck :-)