Friday, June 28, 2013

Devon Cream Splits small enough to call Sliders.

Aren't these little beauties? They are just about the right size for two genteel bites and as such look like the sweet version of burger sliders. This recipe can be used for Yorkshire Tea Cakes and also an Iced Tea Ring - I'll add the variations for those at the end of the recipe.

When I started this recipe rolling I was so convinced it was not going to work that I neglected to take photos thinking I would be making a second batch to correct what seemed like the wrong comparative amounts of the ingredients so I am scant on process pictures, my apologies - when I make them again soon, they were awfully good and actually much easier than I thought they were going to be, I will add in some pics of the yeast and dough.

DEVON CREAM SPLITS from Complete Vegetarian Recipe Book 
by Ivan Baker

Have all your ingredients at a nice warm room temperature - the butter especially should be very soft but not melted.

Makes a good 20 sliders

INGREDIENTS: I like to weigh my ingredients, especially for a yeasted recipe as it makes it much more reliable than cups but am giving cup equivalents which can never be precise as everyone weighs cups differently

2 ozs/ 1/2 cup/ 50 grams white flour

10 fluid ounces of warm (90 degree) whole milk 

2 scant level tablespoons of dry yeast (this is the amount that flummoxed me - seemed like a huge amount but it worked) - times can vary depending on the freshness of your yeast - here's a way to test your yeast
(I just did some research into this and it appears the faster you prove your dough the more yeast you use to make it rise quickly)

One teaspoon of sugar

1. Dissolve the yeast and sugar in 2 tablespoons of the warm milk in a bowl - this will be quite thick

2. Slowly stir in the rest of the milk in two batches alternating with the flour.

3. Mix until smooth.

4. Cover bowl with a clean cloth and stand in a cosy place for 1/2 hour.

The yeast mix was way more bubbly than this picture below but I thought I should give you some form of reference for the yeast as a visual is always helpful - especially if you're not familiar with working with yeast. 
It was much more energetic than this and rose way higher - just FYI
Now add the following ingredients in the order in which they are listed and mix well between each addition:

1 eaten egg - maybe that should be beaten egg!!

3ozs/scant 1/2 cup/100grams of sugar 

1lb/4 cups/380 grams white flour - add this in 3 or 4 goes not all at once

1/4 teaspoon salt

3oz very soft butter  - I always use Kate's from Old Orchard Beach, Maine - it's such a fresh flavourful butter - and it's local for me!!

1. Now knead this ridiculous sticky and unmanageable mess for about 3 or 4 minutes until it miraculously comes together very nicely into a smooth and lovely dough  - this part was really convincing me everything was wrong - but it turned out I was wrong!!

2. Cover and stand in a warm spot for another half and hour.

3. Knead back the dough - ie knock it down and take the air out of it.

4. Tear off into big walnut sized pieces and roll into sweet little balls and place on a greased tray thus:
 5. Cover your little babies with a light tea towel and prove once again for half an hour.

6. After about 15 minutes start your oven and set it to 375F.

7. When the half an hour is up pop your dough balls into the oven and bake for about 12 minutes until lightly golden.

8. Remove from the oven and put on a cooling rack and allow to cool completely.

9. In the meantime whip some lovely cream with your preferred amount of sugar to soft pipeable peaks and have your preferred jelly/jam - even marmalade, to hand, although strawberry or raspberry jam is traditional.

10 When completely cool split almost halfway through put a nice big dollop of jam in there and then pipe as much cream as you can without getting silly - arrange on a pretty plate and then dust with confectioners/icing sugar - and there you have: 
DEVON CREAM SPLITS - light, airy, not too sweet - heavenly and good with a nice hot cuppa!!

To make Yorkshire Tea Cakes do the exact same recipe but make the dough balls twice as big, add 5oz of currants to the dough before kneading and DON'T split and add the cream and jam - instead split them in half horizontally, toast them and slather with lashings of the best butter you can find - good with a cuppa also on a rainy afternoon.

To make Iced Tea Rings...weigh off the dough into 40z balls - then roll each ball into a 12 inch rope - twist pairs of ropes together and form into rings, bake as directed. Cool completely and ice with a simple confectioners/icing sugar icing - and then scatter toasted flaked almonds atop and eat with - you guessed it - a nice cup of tea.... 

I just found an excellent place to do conversions, from the French Culinary Institute, for conversions from weights to cups to grams for all sorts of basic ingredients - check it out here:

Happy Baking - if you make these please feel free to post pictures to my Facebook page here:

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Thank you - Patricia!!
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