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    Teisen lap with lavender honey and roast figs

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    Teisen lap with lavender honey and roast figs

    Matt Tebbutt, chef and food writer, recalls his boyhood in Wales – and the traditional cake his mum used to bake.... Teisen lap, which roughly translates as moist cake, is an old-fashioned Welsh recipe that my mother would cook for our family. I grew up in Wales after we moved there when I was about six months old. I remember scoffing the cake down for tea on Sunday afternoons in front of The Antiques Roadshow, while rushing my homework for the next day. It’s a traditional fruit sponge that my mum used to make with anything she could get her hands on – glacé cherries, raisins, mixed peel. You can add whatever you have to give it a more seasonal feel. I like to make it with honey and lavender in the late summer. I serve it in my restaurant The Foxhunter, in Monmouthshire, too, often with roasted figs. And I make it for my kids, who also love it. I like the fact that it will spark childhoood memories for them as well.

    • Preparation time: 50 minutes, plus steeping and infusing
    • Cooking time: 60 minutes
    • Total time: 110 minutes, plus steeping and infusing time 60 minutes 50 minutes

    Makes: Makes 8 squares


    • 5 tbsp Honey
    • 11 Lavender sprigs, fresh or 1 tsp dried flowers
    • 215g Unsalted butter, softened
    • 190g Caster sugar
    • 3 Eggs, beaten
    • 190g Self-raising flour, sifted
    • 2 tsp Mixed spice
    • 1 Lemon, grated zest
    • 1 Orange, grated zest
    • 16 Fresh, ripe figs
    • 227g Clotted Cream
    • 150g Sultanas
    • 125ml Freshly brewed, strong tea


    1. Cover the sultanas with the tea; set aside for between 1 hour and 1 day.
    2. Warm the honey and 3 lavender sprigs in a bain-marie over a low heat. Infuse for 30 minutes; strain.
    3. Preheat the oven to 180˚C/160˚C fan/gas 4. Butter and line a deep 20cm x 20cm baking tin.
    4. Cream 190g butter with the sugar until fluffy; slowly add the eggs, plus 1 tbsp flour, while still beating. Fold in the remaining flour, mixed spice, drained sultanas and citrus zests.
    5. Put the mix into the tin; bake for 50 minutes, or until a skewer comes out clean. Cool; cut into squares.
    6. Turn the oven up to 190˚C/170˚C fan/gas 5. Cut a cross in each fig; pinch open into flower shapes. Put them in a baking dish, dot with the remaining butter and drizzle with the lavender honey. Add a splash of water and roast for 10 minutes.
    7. Serve each cake slice with 2 figs, clotted cream and lavender sprigs.

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