Shearing Cake

400g (14oz) plain flour

10ml (2 tsp) baking powder

225g (8oz) soft light brown sugar

5ml (1 tsp) grated nutmeg or less to taste

20ml (4 tsp) caraway seeds

200g (7oz) butter

200ml (7fl oz ) milk

Zest of half a lemon

2 eggs

Pinch of salt

In Welsh this simple cake is known as ‘Cacen Gneifio’ and traditionally it was prepared to serve with tea for all the farm workers who gathered to help on days when the sheep were sheared and dipped.

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1.  Line and grease a 20 cm/8 inch round cake tin. Set the oven at 180ºC/160ºC Fan/350ºF/gas 4.

2 . Sift the flour, salt and baking powder into a mixing bowl. Rub in the butter until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs, then stir in the sugar, lemon rind and spices.

3. In a second bowl, beat the eggs lightly with the milk, then stir the liquid gradually into the dry ingredients.

4. Spoon the mixture into the prepared tin and bake for 1½ hours or until cooked through and firm to the touch, covering the surface with a piece of grease paper or foil if it browns

too quickly.

5. Cool for 10 minutes in the tin, then invert on a wire rack to cool completely.