The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

HELP: Barm cake recipe

kevin98230's picture

HELP: Barm cake recipe

Dear all,

I am glad that i found this amazing site for baking bread!!!!  

I am just wondering,

Does anyone know the recipe for Barm cake (Lancashire)? I read a old link on this site about barm bread but yet the recipe werent posted with it. 

Many thanks, 

I am looking forward to bake...




qahtan's picture

 This is the recipe given to me from a friend whose father has a bake shop

 in Lancashire, UK.

 The "thing" that makes barm cakes  barm cakes is the suet or beef dripping that is that magic ingredient. so it is not just another bread roll. I have not made this recipe.   qahtan



Barm Cakes

600g starter @ 60 %

600g flour

360 g water 

12g salt  4

40g of suet or beef drippingflour to dust.

 Make up your starter the day before and allow to proof for 3 hours ,if yeasted, or 6 if using a barm : -), then put in the fridge over night. Mix all your ingredients leaving out the salt and a pinch of flour. Allow to rest for half an hour. Then knead in the salt by spreading out the dough to about 1 1/2 " spread the salt on top and roll up, knead a few times 'til it's nice and springy about 40 seconds. : -) I love autolyse.  Allow to rise 'til doubled then turn out and fold the dough a couple of times and make a torpedo. Divide into 12 equal balls and roll the balls on some flour 'til you have 12 x 1/2"  thick cakes. I suppose you could roll the whole thing out and use a crumpet size cutter.  Place on a floured baking tray and dust with more flour. Allow to rise for about 1 1/2 hours. Mine didn't rise much but I new they would in the oven. I didn't want to ferment too long as I wanted a nice fluffy inside.  I set the oven to 450˚F then turned the oven down a bit once they were in. I turned them after 7 mins and then took them out after another 7.  I did want them to be stronger in flavour but didn't want to compromise the nice soft crumb. They're great toasted.   

kevin98230's picture

Hi Qahtan, 

Thank you very much for such prompt and well-detail reply. Very authentic recipe indeed. I am sure I can now ease my lancashire friends from their nostalgia.

I am looking forward now to make some.

Thanks again 


Salfordian's picture

It isn't easy to find suet in USA.  Atora packaged suet can't be imported from UK. Brit shops sell a substitute made by Atora but it isn't animal fat.  Has anyone tried it to make barm cakes?

Some years ago I found a wholesale butcher who gave be a big chunk of suet but I don't remember the address.

Chefmore41's picture

1lb strong white flour

1teaspoon salt 

2oz lard 

2teaspoons sugar

10z fresh yeast 

10fl oz milk and water mixed 

mix liquid with yeast leave 5mins add to dry ingredients 

knead and prove for 1hour cut into 10 

make into round and flatten with a rolling pin about 1/2inch thick 

cover and prove for 20 mins 


bake for 20mins 450f gas 8  makes 10