• Cath

Gluten free sourdough lardy cake

This is such a British classic, and it brings back memories of my childhood growing up in the 70's and 80's! When we used to visit a bakery I would always get the lardy cake. Possibly the most delicious baked good in history!!

Definitely only meant for special occasions, so I chop it up and freeze it in portions to make it last for longer. The lardy cake fell out of favour for a while due to the high saturated fat content, but now that butter and saturated fats are back in for baking, and far more preferable to hydrogenated fats such as margarine it has seen a revival.

Pork lard was an impulse buy when I was doing my grass fed meat order, and I immediately thought ooh, I wonder if I can make a sourdough lardy cake!! The first attempt was a total success, so here is my recipe.

You will need to see my other recipe for how to make a gluten free sourdough starter. (Warning - that takes 7 days!)


  • 3 cups gluten free bread flour

  • 1 tablespoon xantham gum

  • 2 tablespoons sugar

  • 1 teaspoon salt

  • 60g pork lard for rubbing

  • 1.5 cups gluten free sourdough starter

  • 1 cup hemp milk

  • 200g pork lard

  • 220g dried fruit

  • 140g sugar

  • Additional rice flour or gluten free bread flour for rolling


  1. Put the bread flour, salt, xantham gum, and 2 tablespoons sugar into a bowl. Add 60g of cold diced pork lard, and rub it in.

  2. Add the sourdough starter and approximately 1 cup of warmed hemp milk, and stir together to reach a dough like consistency. (May need slightly more or slightly less hemp milk)

  3. Leave the dough to rest in a bowl covered with a t-towel, in a warm place for 2 - 3 hours.

  4. Turn the dough out onto a floured sheet of baking paper.

  5. Using plenty of additional flour shape the dough out into a rectangle

  6. Take a third of the lard and place it in blobs over half the rolled dough. Also sprinkle a third of the sugar, and a third of the dried fruit over the same half. Take the other half and fold it over the top.

  7. Use another sheet of baking paper and plenty of spare flour to roll the dough out again into a rectangle. Repeat the previous step twice, until you have all three lots incorporated into the dough

  8. Line a baking tin with greased baking paper and shape the dough into the tin.

  9. Let the dough sit and rest in a warm place for half an hour.

  10. Pre-heat the oven to 190 degrees C

  11. Place your cake tin in another dish to catch any escaping lard.

  12. Bake for 45 mins

  13. Spoon any of the escaped lard back over the top of the cake.

  14. Let the cake cool completely, then serve cold.

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