“If you have never made your own oatcakes have a try, it's so easy. I recently bought a girdle from a charity shop - one of the old ones our ancestors would have used to cook drop scones on - and the taste is completely different from baking in an oven. The smokiness from the flames of a real fire lick the edges of the girdle which flavours the oatcakes, giving them real character.”
This recipe will make about 50 £2 coin sized oatcakes that will keep in an airtight tub for a week.
For the oatcakes:
500g pinhead oats
100g porridge oats
40g plain flour
1teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
150g bacon fat, lard or butter, melted
Approximately 500ml water, or buttermilk, which makes for a really rich oatcake
For the topping:
A few slices of smoked trout, I get mine from Belhaven
Enough crème fraîche for a dollop on each oatcake, I like Katy Rodgers
A few cornichons, or pickled cucumbers
A few chives
Mix all the oatcake ingredients together and trickle in the water, or buttermilk, a little at a time. If you are using a mixer or food processor, combine until you have a good dough.
Roll the dough into 4 sausage shapes, about the width of a £2 coin, then wrap in cling film and store in the fridge until firm. Then slice into ½-cm thick discs using a very sharp, serrated knife. Cook on a pre-heated girdle, or heavy-based frying pan, rubbed with a little lard or butter, for a couple of minutes on each side. Finish cooking them in a low oven (125°C) for about 30 to 40 minutes, or until golden and crisp.
To serve, top each oatcake with a few flakes of smoked trout, a slice of cornichon or pickled cucumber, a dollop of crème fraîche and snipped chives. Perfect!