‘This is Ron,’ Harry told Hagrid, who was pouring boiling water into a large teapot and putting rock cakes onto a plate.
‘Another Weasley, eh?’ said Hagid, glancing at Ron’s freckles. ‘I spent half me life chasin’ yer twin brothers away from the Forest.’
The rock cakes almost broke their teeth, but Harry and Ron pretended to be enjoying them as they told Hagrid all about their first lessons. Fang rested his head on Harry’s knee and drooled all over his robes.
– Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, p.104
Hagrid’s kitchen mishaps are absolutely legendary! Typically, his Rock Cakes are a danger for any teeth and only consumable with a big mug of tea.
Today I experienced a minor kitchen mishap myself…it was a really stressful morning – I worked until 11 o’clock, then I walked home as fast as I could to cook for my parents who had to work until 12 o’clock. I decided to bake something small for dessert, too, and thought that it was time to bake some Rock Cakes.
Baking Rock Cakes is as easy as it can get – unless you’re in a terrible hurry, of course! I’m not bad at cooking and baking several different things at once, actually, and I didn’t notice that anything had gone wrong until my Dad asked me whether these Rock Cakes contained a lot of sugar. Then, the scales fell from my eyes and I realised that I’d forgotten to add any sugar! I had been thinking about what a pity it was that I couldn’t use my beloved muscovado sugar (as I had run out of it a couple of days ago) and thought I would use white sugar instead. But I didn’t.
The surprising and good thing about my mishap is, however, that when I tasted the Rock Cakes, I didn’t feel like there was much sugar missing! Certainly not the 75g, the recipe had suggested. The ones with chocolate can go without any sugar, though I think I will add a little bit of sugar next time I bake them. The classical ones with raisins could do with a bit more sugar, but certainly not as much as 75g.
So, at least this unintentional experiment showed that I can gladly reduce the amount of sugar of my Rock Cakes recipe and I have already done so in the recipe below (by the way, feel free to try out several different amounts of sugar yourself and tell me about it). Also, I feel it really fits that these Rock Cakes, after all, Hagrid’s Rock Cakes, are a bit imperfect. And they’re almost healthy, if you think about it. I think I’ll go and grab another one. =)
Hagrid’s Rock Cakes
Traditional Rock Cakes contain raisins. For all those who aren’t very fond of raisins their substitution by chocolate is a real alternative.
Preparation time: ca. 10 min
Baking time: 15-20 min
Yield: about 18 Rock Cakes
- 220 g flour
- 2 tsp. baking powder
- 1 pinch of salt
- 40g sugar (or 20g, if you substitute raisins by chocolate)
- 110g butter (cold, cut into cubes)
- 1 egg
- 2 tbsp. milk
- 120 g raisins (or 120g dark chocolate, coarsely chopped)
- Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F). Prepare a baking tin with a baking parchment.
- Sieve flour and baking powder into a medium bowl.
- Add salt and sugar.
- Add the cold butter (cut into cubes) and rub it with your fingertips into the dry ingredients until the mixture resembles grated parmesan. Be careful: You have to work quickly, otherwise the butter will melt.
- Make a well in the centre of the mixture and add an egg and 2 tablespoons of milk. Use a fork to whisk the egg and milk together and gradually mix into the dry ingredients. If the dough’s too dry add a bit more milk. Don’t overwhisk.
- Add raisins/chopped chocolate and form small heaps about the size of a teaspoon. Put them on the baking tin (with a space between them as they will spread).
- Bake in the middle of the oven for 15-20 minutes or until they get a golden colour.
- Let them cool down on a wire rack. They’re best when served with tea or coffee.
Tip: You can also bake both versions at once: Just add about 30g of sugar and divide the dough into two parts after you’ve added all the ingredients up to the milk. Then add 60g of raisins to one part and 60g of chopped chocolate to the other part.
(recipe after „Deliciously Vintage“ by Victoria Glass)
To get a printed version: Download the pdf.
(Both English and German versions available!)