Pastry pouches of spiced, drunken currants are a natural companion to Isle of Mull cheddar #cheeseclubdiscovery #eccles #thx@saltieny (at Cyril’s)
Some cheese club members mentioned that they’d like the recipe for the Eccles Cakes we made the other night. Here you go.
The dough: Pate Brisee
Everyone who cooks/bakes has a go to pie dough. Just use that if you have one. If you don’t, I’m going to share my go-to so you have something to work with. I am devoted to this recipe that I discovered this summer on SmittenKitchen.com and I am in full agreement with the author that food processors are not the way to go for dough. I use what’s called a pastry blender- a little handheld jobber that you use to cut the butter into the flour.
This recipe makes enough for two batches of eccles cakes or two pie crusts- so consider it a twofer and make one batch of eccles and one pie… it’s the holidays after all, right?
The innards: Drunken Spiced Currants
I’m torn here. The recipe I used- which I think came out beautifully- is from a cookbook written by my friend Caroline Fidanza. The book is called Saltie, A Cookbook. And it’s a book you should all own really. We use it all the time at Cyril’s, and I know that Caroline’s belief about recipes is that if you examine them closely, they are all cribbed from other recipes, all plagiarized to some extent and she probably wouldn’t mind if I posted her Eccles directions here but- it doesn’t feel exactly right to me.
SO- I’ll offer up a couple recipes available online that look quite similar and then just cross my fingers that you go and buy the Saltie book because in it you’ll find the keys to many culinary pleasures (perfect pickles, life-changing sandwiches, and lost but thankfully not forgotten desserts like Eccles cakes).
Note that neither of these recipes include any booze- which I think is a strange omission. My suggestion is to add 1 shot (1.5 oz) whiskey or brandy to the mix.