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Eccles cake recipe (sort of): Vegan MoFo

Can't believe the end of MoFo is nearly upon us - it kind of snuck up on me, so I've had to do a double post today!

 So, the second in this double header is Eccles cakes, which are named after Eccles, a town near Manchester where they were first sold at the end of the 18th century.

They're not cakes in the sense that we know them today - they're pastries filled with sugar, spices, mixed peel and currants and baked until all puffed and tasty.

As I've mentioned before, currants give me the fear, so as a kid, I loathed the Eccles cake. My brother would tease me they were made of dead flies, and I remember every bite being filled with hard dried fruit. Yuck.

Still, there's no currant evil that can't be undone with tasty sultana magic, so I picked a traditional Eccles cake recipe (you can find it here) and veganised it with soy milk and butter equivalent.

It's really simple to make - just fry a handful of sultanas and a spoon or two of mixed peel in a little vegan butter for a couple of minutes, then add a few shakes of cinnamon and sugar. Next, scoop a heaped spoon into a circle of ready made puff pastry. Gather the pastry together and seal with non-dairy milk, then invert and pat down and shape into a little round cakey thing. Put a couple of cuts in the top, brush with milk, sprinkle on some sugar then bake as per the instructions on the puff pastry pack.

Here's what happened:

Thanks to the addition of the sultanas and removal of the currants, it was pretty tasty - way nicer than the dry flakey grimness I remembered as a kid. They may not be traditional recipe, but they were pretty darn good.

If you make them at home, it's up to you whether you go sultana, currant or something else entirely, but whatever you do, don't forget to put the three slits on the top. Why? It's traditional - and some traditions really can't be ignored!

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  1. That sounds so easy and lovely, definitely going to make these when I'm craving something a bit sweet but don't want to make anything too complicated or time-consuming!

  2. Oh my goodness I cannot WAIT to make these! I've been excited to recreate all of your posts this month, but this one moved to the top of my list. Thanks for linking to the recipe and sharing how you veganized it.

  3. this is the sort of cake I wouldn't have appreciated as a kid but warm and flaky out of the oven I would love (is it because we had too many dried versions from bakeries and have learnt fresh is best?)

  4. These look gorgeous- am with you on the currants :)

  5. They look so good! I love Eccles cakes, so these are definitely going on my to-bake list :)

  6. Congrats making all the way to the end of VeganMoFo! I enjoy reading all about your English dishes - it's an awesome theme. These "puffed" Eccles "cakes" or pastries look so tasty!

  7. Ermigerd, it is almost October! Which is fine by me because it means my birthday is soon. :) But the second half of MoFo was a total write off for me, I guess moving will do that. Congrats on keeping regular with the posts though! And these look great, and not at all dead-fly-ish. Ah children. Like how my dad told me once that tapioca pudding was fish eggs, and I never could eat it after that. Good on you for overcoming food phobias!

  8. Great minds think alike! I was playing with puff pastry this weekend too.

    Congrats on a fabulous MoFo! Your posts were awesome, your dedication was impressive and your food always looked delicious. Even when you said the recipe didn't turn out (looking at you, Singing Hinnies) I still wanted to eat all of it.

  9. Those are fine looking! I'm thinking you could ditch all tradition and melt some chocolate in there like pain au chocolat. Still put the three slits on top, of course.

  10. I'm delighted to see these making an appearance. I grew up within walking distance of Eccles and even went to Eccles Sixth Form College! I love Eccles Cakes :)

  11. I'm glad these turned out to be pastries and not cake because I'd take pastries over cake any day! Gotta love how all those childhood food fears stick with you, I still can't drink bubble tea because someone used to tell me that it was made with eyeballs....and I'm not taking any chances.


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