LARDY cake – the best name ever for a cake?

It’s an addictive and fattening recipe, which is so irresistible.

No messing, no fancy title, just a cake made from pure lard, which is very rarely seen or made today.

Maybe it’s because people prefer Danish pastries and croissants rather than this forgotten Yorkshire-made delicacy.

The lardy cake is something of a throwback recipe for many of the older generation today, I feel, and it’s a bit like something from a Famous Five book.

The cake originates from the pig farming counties of Wiltshire and Gloucestershire, and I guess they had to use all that lard for something.

It was created in the days when manual workers needed a boost of energy – the ideal ‘peasant food on the go’.

These cakes are just perfect straight from the oven, either for breakfast or for a sneaky afternoon snack with a brew.

Lard is definitely an ingredient that has got a bit of a bad name, with everyone trying to avoid fats and saturated fats, but don’t be squeamish.

Of course lard isn’t popular these days because it contains several million calories a slice and the dieticians and health Gestapo want us to stop eating anything that is high in animal fats and sugar.

Actually, the fat content of this very user-friendly cake contains no trans fats, which butter does.

I’m not going to pretend it’s really good for you, but you have to do everything in moderation for a balanced diet, we are often told, and these cakes are well worth the effort to make.

It’s not something to eat every day, and is most likely to offend those watching their weight and send vegetarians running for the hills, but it makes a great one-off treat.

Once baked, butter can be spread over, but those who don’t wish to pile on more fat can eat it warm, or maybe toasted for breakfast the next day.

Just think of it as a Danish pastry, or even have a brisk walk on Haworth Moors afterwards... or both!

So, on a final nostalgic note, dripping sandwiches were nothing to shout about when I was growing up. They were the staple food for most, lingering from the war effort for the impoverished and those struggling, from the Sunday roast goodness.

Today, from Michelin restaurants to the local chippies frying chips in beef dripping, this Yorkshire tradition of using animal fats should be used more often in our diets.

After all, we do know where it comes from and that must be a good thing, and at the end of the day who would argue with a butcher with a meat cleaver in his hand.

Not me, for one!

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