“ Brand: Popty Cae Groes / Type: Breads/Cakes „
Despite numerous short breaks to Wales recently, it was only during my last visit that I sampled these Popty Cae Groes Welsh Cakes - and even then they were purchased from a branch of Tesco in Porthmadog, not the olde worlde gift shop you may imagine!
I had never before eaten them bought 'raw', indeed the previous day I had tried a Welsh Cake in a traditional Welsh tearoom. It had arrived toasted so I was somewhat surprised to find the untoasted version looked not dissimilar to a flat potato cake, upon opening the packet I was met with six fairly large (but flat) discs which actually looked altogether too pale and dusty for my appetite.
I ate one untoasted and was surprised at how bland and tasteless it was, the extreme doughiness of the Welsh Cake was quite off-putting and I almost tossed the remaining five in the bin as we packed up to go home. Luckily there was a smidgen of room in my suitcase so they won a temporary reprieve, with me thinking I would take them home and pass them onto the lady who lives next door as she adores anything of this nature.
Upon arriving home, however, I decided to toast one in a bid to try to recreate the tearoom Welsh Cake I had eaten a couple of days previously. And gosh, what a difference a brief toasting makes! They take literally two minutes to toast adequately, and while under the grill the Welsh Cakes released such a deliciously sweet and spicy aroma that I instantly realised what a mistake I had made by eating the first (untoasted) one.
The flavours within these Popty Cae Groes Welsh Cakes were quite wonderful; gone was the blandness and chewy texture of the doughy Welsh Cake, replaced by a delicious melt in your mouth softness and a nicely spiced flavour. There are a perfect amount of raisins within each Welsh Cake, all of which were bursting with freshness and flavour. When slathered with butter, these Welsh Cakes make an extremely satisfying and tasty treat.
I adored the mixed spice flavour of the Welsh Cakes, something which really only becomes apparent after toasting - and do not be tempted to toast for too long as you really only need the slightest hint of browning to allow this spiciness to come through. The flavour and texture of the raisins add a delightful fruitiness to the Welsh Cake which actually put me in mind of scones, albeit flat and rather sweet scones.
I recall this packet of six Welsh Cakes cost £1.49 in Tesco, unfortunately they are not available in any of the English stores I have visited - although I suspect the closer to get to the Welsh border, the more change you will have of sourcing a packet. Another interesting thing to note is that these Welsh Cakes are still perfectly good to eat even when the untoasted product feels as though it is 'past its best'. My final Welsh Cake was feeling a little tough to the touch, yet I toasted it anyway and was rather surprised to find it was absolutely fine after toasting - all in all the open packet of Welsh Cakes kept for around six days, surprising considering they contain very few preservatives and had not been kept in an airtight container and were basically left open in my breadbin for most of that time.