Nova Scotia Oatcakes

February 19, 2008

Dining at Dalhousie Castle
Photo courtesy Vossen Media Co (U.K.)

Who wouldn’t want to spend the night in a castle? Some castles are luxurious and some castles are wonderfully old: the Dalhousie Castle near Edinburgh, miraculously, is both. If Sam and Harry are smart, they will have first flown in to London and then traveled to Edinburgh overnight on The Flying Scotsman – it’s only a 4-hour ride, but folks can check into a private sleeping compartment several hours early at Kings Cross station, and don’t have to leave the train at Edinburgh Waverley the next morning until after being served tea and a scone. Very romantic!

While the couple may not find Scottish haggis to their liking, they must be sure to try the many varieties of oat cakes that are a Scottish specialty. While store-bought Scottish oatcakes are generally crisper and saltier, the texture and slight sweetness of these homemade ones remind me of scones. We make them often! – Almostgotit

Nova Scotia Oatcakes

3 cups quick rolled oats
3 cups flour
1 cup brown sugar (packed)
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons salt
1 1/2 cup shortening
2/3 – 3/4 cup cold water

In a large bowl, mix dry ingredients together.  Cut in shortening. Add enough water to form a rather stiff, pastry-like dough.  Roll 3/8 ” thick and cut into circles.  Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes on a greased baking sheet.  Makes lots!

  • Variation: one may sneakily substitute 1/2 cup apple sauce (one of those single-serving cups is just right) for the same portion of shortening and I guarantee no one will notice; bolder folk may substitute even more applesauce and the recipe will change a bit but still work fine; however, Sam will no doubt notice and object. 
  • Canada’s “Nova Scotia” is, of course, Latin for “New Scotland.” This recipe, given to us by a Canadian friend many years ago, is similar to a very old one that probably traces back to early Scottish settlers. Moreover? There is a “Dalhousie University” in Halifax, the capital city of this island province.
Advertisements