St. David’s Day – Welsh Cakes recipe
29 February 2012 § 15 Comments
As a proud Welsh woman I will be wearing my daffodil with pride and eating lots of buttery food tomorrow to celebrate St. David’s Day.
Wales is known as both the land of song and a place with its own language of many consonants, vowels are generally in short supply. Take the village name – Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch as an example of Welsh language genius (or insanity.) All this talk of Wales makes me feel a tad homesick and I always feel some hiraeth this time of year (amazingly for the Welsh language a word with three vowels – that must be a record).
Hiraeth is a Welsh word that has no direct English translation. It is a mixture between nostalgia and a longing for home. At times like these I long for the food of my childhood: Welsh Cakes in particular. They are addictive, buttery little griddle cakes. But why do my Welsh Cakes never taste as good as my mum’s or my nan’s? Maybe it has something to do with the lard or the heavy well-seasoned heavy cast iron griddle pan they used or both? Here’s the Welsh Cake recipe I posted last year.
Wales is not internationally renowned for its food, but we have a treasure trove of national resources. With close proximity to the sea – laverbread (seaweed) is a favorite, mussels, cockles are all plentiful. There is much farmland with really rich soil which means lots of fresh root vegetables and dairy. The grass really is as green as Tom Jones sang which makes Welsh lamb the best in the world (apologies to any Kiwis reading this for my rampant Welsh nationalism). Our national cheese is Caerphilly a crumbly white cheese with a delicate flavor. We even have the our own food Oscars – the True Taste Wales Food & Drink Awards.
Even the grey, mizzly weather here on the East Coast (very much like Wales most of the time) is making me strangely nostalgic. It is a perfect day for making some Welsh dishes. Teisin nionod and selsig Morgannwg are on my list, that’s Welsh onion tart and Glamorganshire sausage (a vegetarian dish made with leeks and cheese with not a real sausage in sight.) Will post recipes with directions in English over the next few days.
Anyway back to celebrating Wales. I will be singing along badly to the perfect soundtrack of Tom Jones and Shirley Bassey, just a few of Wales’s best exports, perfect music for the kitchen.