Oatcakes are very versatile and take such basic, simple ingredients. A cross between a cookie and a cracker, they are savory bites and are not overly sweet. In fact, I would describe these artisan cookies/crackers as having a nice short, crisp texture. Scottish in origin, oatcakes probably made their debut in Canada when they arrived along with Scottish immigrants.
Oatcakes can be eaten as plain cookies or sandwiched together with jam or date filling. They can be consumed as crackers served with various condiments such as tangy gourmet preserves and marmalades alongside cheese, such as Brie. Here I am serving them with J.J. Stewart’s Cranberry Champagne and Crystalized Ginger Preserves made in Stratford, PEI. You can read the story I wrote earlier on J.J. Stewart’s products by clicking here.
This product is a bit sharp and tangy and goes particularly well with a plain oatcake and Brie cheese. Whatever preserve, jam, or marmalade you serve with these, make sure it is not runny. It needs to be fairly thick consistency so it will stay in place atop the oatcake. Choosing a bright red jam makes these colorful savories!
Oatcakes can also be dipped in chocolate. And, yes, they can even find their way onto an afternoon tea table because they taste especially good with a fine cup of tea. In fact, I served them at my Tartan Day Afternoon Tea this year.
Old-fashioned Scottish Oatcakes
1 cup shortening, softened at room temperature
1 cup white sugar
2 eggs, room temperature
1 tsp vanilla
2 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
¼ tsp salt
2 cupsold-fashioned rolled oats (not instant)
Preheat oven to 350°. Line baking sheets with parchment paper.
With electric mixer, cream shortening and sugar.
Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Blend in vanilla.
In separate bowl, mix flour, baking soda, and salt.
With mixer at lowest speed, gradually add the flour mixture until combined.
Remove bowl from mixer and, using a wooden spoon, add the rolled oats. Stir well.
On a lightly floured work surface, roll dough thin – between ⅛” and ¼” thick. Cut into 2” circles or squares.
Place on prepared baking sheets, spacing the oatcakes about 1 1/2 inches apart.
Bake 10 minutes. Remove from oven and let set on baking sheet for 3-4 minutes, then transfer to wire rack to cool completely.
Oatcakes freeze very well. They are a great staple to have on hand along with a good quality preserve or marmalade so, when company drops in unexpectedly, it is quick and easy to pull together some refreshments. Set out the bottle of preserve, a stack of oatcakes, some favorite cheese, and fresh fruit and you have a savory snack food!
Old-fashioned Scottish Oatcakes
- 1 cup shortening, softened at room temperature
- 1 cup white sugar
- 2 eggs, room temperature
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp baking soda
- ¼ tsp salt
- 2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats (not instant)
- Assemble ingredients.
- Preheat oven to 350°. Line baking sheets with parchment paper.
- With electric mixer, cream shortening and sugar. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Blend in vanilla.
- In separate bowl, mix flour, baking soda, and salt. With mixer at lowest speed, gradually add the flour mixture until combined. Remove bowl from mixer and, using a wooden spoon, add the rolled oats. Stir well.
- On lightly floured work surface, roll dough thin – between ⅛” and ¼” thick. Cut into 2” circles or squares. Gather and re-roll scraps to cut out remaining oatcakes. Place on prepared baking sheets, spacing oatcakes about 1½“ apart.
- Bake 10 minutes. Let oatcakes rest on baking sheets for 3-4 minutes then transfer to wire cooling rack.
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