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Oven Bottom Cake

Yorkshire, Lancashire

The term 'oven bottom' is occasionally applied to types of bread and cakes cooked, presumably, at the bottom of the oven. There is no definitive form, nor can there be as different designs of oven will be either hotter, or cooler, at the bottom than the top.


The name is often (2012) applied in Lancashire to very soft low-bake barm cakes, and occasionally in Yorkshire to a lightly-fruited type of teacake, traditionally made from surplus bread dough, sugar and chopped lard and baked in a round.

Before ovens with shelves became commonplace towards the end of the 19th Century all baked goods were cooked on the oven bottom, so that the term 'oven-bottom' is relatively recent. The earliest reference we can find is in the novel 'The Scowcroft Critics', set in Lancashire, by John Ackworth (1898); "'Caleb, when is it yore sarmons?' asked Sarah Ann, as she handed her brother a piece of new oven-bottom cake."

See also: Bread Names

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