After the seriousness of the last post, I feel that a more lighthearted story is needed. Today when I was buying my lunch, I noticed a yummy looking Devonshire Tea being ordered at a nearby table. This reminded me of the many Welsh Teas I had a few years ago.
In 2004, I visited my daughter in London, and she arranged for us to go on a fantastic bike ride across Wales. It wasn’t an organised ride, but was just the two of us carrying everything we would need for a week in panniers on the bikes. This ride was one of the most enjoyable trips I’ve ever had – on or off the bike. The riding was quite hilly and challenging, but the countryside was stunning. I will never forget riding down the little windy country lanes past many small dairies. The lanes were mostly lined with huge hedges either side. I’d seen it many times in movies and books but nothing compared to being there and seeing the real thing.
So what does this have to do with Devonshire Tea? We discovered early on in our trip that the Welsh Tea was traditional in Wales. Almost every small coffee shop or bakery had Welshcakes at the top of their list. At first I thought they looked dreadful. Not light and fluffy, like the Devonshire Tea that we are used to. But more like a pancake with fruit. How looks could be deceiving! These little wonders tasted amazing. They are more doughy than the traditional scone that we know. And also quite spicy. The big difference is that they are not cooked in the oven. They are traditionally cooked on the stovetop on a griddle but often cooked in a frypan these days.
After a morning on the bike, pedalling, usually uphill into the wind and rain, there was nothing better than two little Welsh Cakes served with Jam and Cream. I can still remember how they yummy they tasted
At the time, I told myself that I loved them so much because I was meant to eat them, as my paternal ancesty is Welsh. My great great grandparents emigrated from Wales in the 1840’s . I’m sure the Welsh Cake loving gene was passed down to me from them. I love to think so anyway.
I’m looking forward to my next trip to Wales which will be a research and Welshcake eating trip. Not sure when, but hopefully not too far into the distant future.
Is there a recipe in your family that you love and that reminds you of your family history? Or do you have a recipe that has been in your family for generations?