Nanna's Rock Cakes

Happy Wednesday guys! I've talked a lot about my nan over the years because she was my person - I miss that gorgeous lady everyday! Her handwritten recipe books are such a treasure to me, and sometimes I just look at them to see her writing, other times I like to cook something she loved.
I'm sharing one of her favorite recipes today. They're simple and sweet, yummy and soul warming, they're Nanna's Rock Cakes:

When I was growing up, Sunday mornings meant church and then off to nan and pops for morning tea and then a roast lunch. Nan would bake the fluffiest, plumpest scones for morning tea but if we were really lucky she would also pull a batch of Rock Cakes from the oven.
Rock Cakes became popular during WW2 because they required less eggs and sugar. Despite their name they're not hard, quite the opposite actually - the outer rough surface resembles the texture of a rock but the inside is soft and cake like.

Rock Cakes can be made with any dried fruit but nan preferred a generous scattering of sultanas. She was quite adamant about it actually because she has written her recipe as "9oz of sultanas, raisins or currants" and then drawn two lines through the raisins and currants ;) She's done the same with mixed peel - she wasn't a fan and neither am I, so its been omitted.
I'm sure most nan's made Rock Cakes for their families, and there are probably lots of recipes out there but I have always made them just like nan did.

Nanna's Rock Cakes are lightly flavored with cinnamon, and that's one of those smells I always associate with my grandparents kitchen.  Cinnamon has a soul warming aroma and when you pop a plate full of these Rock Cakes on the table it entices people to nibble.
They are perfect to have with a cup of tea so make a batch for your family, sewing group or book club. They are also really popular at school fetes, and I think this is because everyone loved their nanna's cooking.

The recipe is easy to prepare and requires simple ingredients you'll have on hand - that's why I love the older recipes so much.  They are rustic, flavorsome and take no time at all to bake and there's no need for fancy equipment.
Nan's recipe makes 18 decent sized Rock Cakes and they are no fuss, no fiddle - just drop mounds on the baking paper and let them do their thing. Make sure you bake them to that gorgeous golden colour, and cool slightly before serving with butter or eat them just as they are.

Trust me they are as yummy as they look - sometimes simple is all you need!
If you would like to bake a batch of Nanna's Rock Cakes you can download the recipe by clicking on the link or right click on the photo below and save it to your computer for later.

Nan would have loved to know I shared her recipe with you. Actually she would have preferred to bake a huge big batch and invite you all over for a day of tea, chatting, crafting and nibbling - you would have loved her too!
A plate of Nanna's Rock Cakes will make today, and everyday special :)

Happy baking :)


  1. Thanks for the background on this cookie. I have grown up with my Grandma's and then my Mom's "Rock" cookies -- one of my Dad's favorites. I always wondered why they were called Rocks since, as you say, they were not hard cookies. Ours were made with dates instead of sultanas, but I'm sure both are delicious. Love your blog!

    1. Oh dates would be nice too ☺ Nan would make Date scones and they were delicious ☺ i might have to try them next time, ive always stuck with sultanas because nan loved them ☺

  2. Thank you Rose, I love rock cakes but only with sultanas, just like your Nana. Cant wait to try these out. Take care, Guida.

    1. Good to see nan wasn't the only one who made them with just sultana's Guida. I love how she has crossed out ingredients and added little notes to her recipes :) I hope you enjoy them :)

  3. That looks really good. I'm all for less sugar and butter! I haven't heard of them - will have to try it!


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